Stripping Down Trump

By Arelya J. Mitchell, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief
The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway

Let’s strip down Donald Trump.

Like millions, I watched the Republican debate on Fox Thursday night on August 6th. My only regret in the kingdom of ficklehood is that it was on at the same time as CBS’s Big Brother eviction night. (Yes, “Big Brother” from day one has been one of my guilty pleasures and that is because in ‘reality’ this show mirrors politics… moving on from those who think anything in reality TV is dumb). And yes, I thought it was a good suggestion when I initially tweeted that if Fox didn’t have room for all the candidates that it should produce a special edition of “Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader?” and put the non-top ten on that…. moving on again to ‘stripping’ down Donald Trump.

But first of all, let me digress. In the history of my life as a journalist, I have never, ever, never seen more journalists themselves become stories. (Yes, I know it can happen and has happened.). The latest is Trump’s dissing of Fox’s Megyn Kelly who co-anchored the debate. See, I don’t care if Trump disrespected her. She is a journalist. What irks me is how her fellow journalists are making a story over Trump disrespecting her just as they did when one of Trump’s advisors allegedly threatened a Daily Beast reporter. As a journalist and newspaper editor, I have been cussed out, threatened, had a Klansman and Klansmen-inspired persons call me up (which was in the 1990s!), some politicians hating on me, and I have essentially been called everything but a child of God. And if a reporter I’ve had and have under my supervision ever complained about getting their feelings hurt then he or SHE can take a hike. Now to be fair, Megyn Kelly herself did not make this a ‘news’ story (I admit I thought way back when, when just seeing how she spelled ‘Megyn’ that she was a Black girl– right up there with Temeka…You know how the stereotype goes… moving on).

Now, if a woman’s biology is derided then the woman has every right to deride a man’s little thing of biology. That should even ‘things’ out, because we all know males cannot take what they dish out when it comes to these ‘things’. Moving on from X-rating this commentary and from climbing on another level of foolishness on my behalf in spite of all’s fair in war and politics.

Anyway, since time was a second, politicians and journalists have always gotten into it, especially behind closed doors. They’re like a married couple that always fight, and wouldn’t have anything to talk about if they didn’t.

Just why is his dissing of journalists a serious story? Because it’s easier to cover Megyn’s biology than it is to cover the Iranian deal, racism, foreign affairs, immigration, and the economy. Yes, when journalists begin to cover stories about themselves then journalism has reached a poor state in which the Fourth Estate has made itself irrelevant, defunct, and an everyman’s career. It is no wonder that it has become the Rodney Dangerfield of 21st Century professions.
We now live in such a politically correct world (hypocrisy in a tuxedo) that ‘Give ‘em Hell’ Harry Truman wouldn’t be elected in this climate.

But this Megyn Kelly foolishness served as an impetus stirring up the hypocrisy concerning Shoshana Johnson, an African American female who was a POW in Iraq. This newspaper editorialized about her treatment. Bottom line: Shoshana was treated like a dog by this nation. She was captured in 2003 at about the same time as her fellow POW Jessica Lynch. Jessica was blond and white; therefore, her POW status was more important than Shoshana’s POW status. We dug deeper into what brought us to our 2010 files in which in addition to our own news coverage there was an AP story about Johnson releasing her book, “I’m Still Standing”. This Black female was denied not only PTSD treatment but had to fight for veterans benefits. Johnson is quoted in this AP interview: “It was kind of hurtful. If I’d been a petite, cutesy thing, it would’ve been different.” (Now I’m going to get back to this POW matter in a moment. Bear with me. Get a cup of black coffee.).

The fact that mainstream journalism is reprimanding Trump is like the pot calling the kettle. Mainstream newsrooms have become whiter than white—so white, in fact, that Clorox might as well be a sponsor. Just ask major Black journalists organizations about their complaints as African American journalists are being escorted out the backdoor while white female journalists are being escorted in the front door to serve as media organizations’ minority du jour.
So, let us all just ‘Emmett Till’ this Megyn matter and call it what it is, because if Megyn Kelly had been a Black female journalist, none of this would be a media Katrina, and Trump never would have been dis-invited to whatever conservative event for which he was scheduled to speak.

John McCain. Now, this gets us back to this POW matter and to those controversial Trump remarks about U.S. Senator John McCain and Trump disrespecting McCain as a war hero and former POW. Even President Barack Obama got in on this one all the way from his fieldtrip in Kenya. You can take a slug of your black coffee here.

Now this is the same President whose White House troops can’t even return a promised phone call from nearly three years ago to the Coalition of Black Veterans Organizations on the matter of getting an honorary promotion for Col. Charles Young, an African American pre-World War I soldier who served under legendary Gen. Black Jack Pershing in Mexico. Young was the first Black soldier to be promoted to colonel in 1918. Young was denied promotion to general because that meant white soldiers would have to salute him. This was the only reason. We’ve written about this issue and amid a ton of press releases, mainstream media can’t cover this, but they can cover John McCain’s alleged slight, and the President can weigh in from Kenya. By the way, Young was shipped off to Africa where he was killed in Nigeria. The President even disregarded the support Young received from two African nations on behalf of the Coalition.

Even when Cong. Barbara Lee, a Black female member of Congress, sent the President a letter of support, she was dissed by all the President’s men. So fast forwarding to the 21st Century, you have the nation’s first Black president in Africa being indignant about McCain; yet, he can’t even return the Coalition of Black Veterans Organizations’ promised call on giving this Buffalo soldier an honorary promotion (underscore ‘honorary’ here), but I ‘Shall Return’ to this issue at a later date.

Yet—and this is a big YET, the President had no problem calling up Bruce Jenner who had screwed over two women into becoming his wives and produced two sets of children after having deceived these two women that he was what he wasn’t or was or ‘wherever’. The White House congratulated Brucette on being brave. YET, he can’t respect the Coalition to honor a real hero who gave his life for his country.

Now harking back to McCain: When Trump said what he did about McCain, I did not view Trump as disrespecting McCain as a POW or as Trump disrespecting veterans or soldiers but rather as Trump attacking McCain, the politician. Then here’s the Fourth Estate having a fit over Trump’s treatment of McCain and churning out headlines that Trump refuses to apologize to McCain. And the way the President came to McCain’s defense, one would have thought he was McCain’s illegitimate son.

The Fourth Estate has yet to ask why this nation has not apologized to Black veterans, Black former POWs, Black soldiers, Shoshana Johnson, and Col. Young!
When McCain came home as a former POW, he received (deservedly) accolades and honors. And R-E-S-P-E-C-T. When Black soldiers and POWs came home all they got was a white boot up their rear ends. When the Tuskegee Airmen returned home, they couldn’t even get jobs as commercial pilots after proving they could fly planes in combat. No one has apologized to these soldiers.

Now all this is to continue the stripping down of Donald Trump. Yes, Trump got the hardest questions and yes in antagonistic tones at times. This is the nature of the beast called politics. And what was the idea of asking him to pledge that he wouldn’t run as a third party candidate if he doesn’t get the Republican nod? Why not ask this of all the candidates? Better yet, if the Republican Party is so concerned about this, then call in all of those who want to run as Republicans to make the pledge. We all know that if any other candidate had been a frontrunner, this question would not have come up? Because they would have been the Elephant’s good little boy and girl presidential hopefuls.

Now let’s backtrack: You have to look at these mainstream newsrooms. Strip them down and you see that their pulling at straws to bring Trump down by any means necessary has to do with Corporate America. These newsrooms are part of Corporate America. They are spokes in mega conglomerates’ wheels. These media groups are among the richest and most influential in America’s democracy and Americanized NGOs in foreign nations. This Corporate America establishment, too, thrives off politicians it can control and/or manipulate in its self-economic interests. As I’ve tweeted, politicians and businessmen have been in the same bed since time was a second. They have sired bills and other legislation. Corporate America has always supported and given millions to both Republicans and Democrats. They provide deep pockets to lobbyists.

Trump has given to both parties as he stated in the debate. This is what they do; this is how they operate. Big businesses have always screwed politicians. That is how they get those babies—the biggest of which was known as Bailout a.k.a. Corporate Welfare.
Trump is part of the Corporate America establishment which means with his billions they cannot control and/or manipulate him like they can and have many politicians in BOTH parties. I don’t view Trump so much as a maverick politician as I do him as a renegade Corporate America member. And the Corporate America media establishment now has to spank him (or beat the hell out of him) for being a bad boy. Yes, the Trumpster has been tactless enough to reduce them to becoming so petty in their attempts to stop his big mouth that they have failed to make sure their journalists cover serious issues. (I mean, the debate was on August 6th and Meggie is still the headline!)

Like Trump, hate Trump, or be indifferent toward Trump, you have to ask yourself in these perilous times of precarious foreign affairs, who would get Putin’s attention? Because you can bet your bottom dollar, Putin is going to make another gigantic move before a new president rolls up to the White House. Yes, America’s domestic challenges will wilt in the face of her (notice I said ‘her’) foreign challenges when Putin makes his move for all of Ukraine and perhaps when Iran reneges.

By the way, like the dress, Megyn. And glad you could get a job after serving your country, John McCain. Glad Clorox can sponsor newsrooms. And to the Coalition of Black Veterans Organizations, wait it out for another president who can respect you and your patriotism or better yet, start talking to presidential hopefuls (from both parties) to see if you can secure the ‘Honorary’ status deserved of Col. Young. Then, of course, you can always dig up Col. Young, have him declared a transgender and put out that he deceived two women by marrying them on what he was while giving them two sets of children. Then and only then can you be assured that the President will return your call after nearly three years. Even better, see if you can get ESPN to give Col. Young a Courage Award for being Black in America.
(And to those transgender supporters, these statements are only about Bruce Jenner. So you need to chill out and get another cup of black coffee.).

So when you strip down Trump, you don’t see Trump’s unmentionables, but rather you see Corporate America establishment’s dirty underwear and fear in their eyes that their renegade black sheep, Trump, just might become the lead shepherd.


The above is on the Editorial, Op/ED, and Black Paper lanes on The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway at Welcome, Travelers!

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The Emanuel A.M.E. Church Massacre and Forgiveness

By Arelya J. Mitchell, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief
The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway

Rev. Clementa Pinckney, Susie Jackson, Rev. Daniel Simmons Sr., Ethel Lance, Myra Thompson, Cynthia Hurd, Rev. DePayne Middleton-Doctor, Rev. Sharonda Singleton, and Tywanza Sanders. These are the lives of the nine African Americans who have symbolically joined the four little Black girls who lost their lives in the 1963 Birmingham church bombing. They have been immortalized. And still, enough is enough.

It was heartbreaking listening to some of the Emanuel A.M.E. Church victims’ families make their statements before a judge on the June 19, 2015 bond hearing for Dylann Roof, the confessed murderer who was shielded via a video link to the courthouse.

Practically each representative of the families said they forgave Roof.

Of course, they have a right to forgive him. But I am going to express the other end of that forgiveness spectrum and semi-echo the statement made by another family member on ABC’s Good Morning America. This particular family member said that at this point she is not ready to “go there” with forgiveness and that forgiveness will be a “process” with her.
I know so many others feel her justifiable anger. My anger also centers on the fact that it is usually Black Americans who express ‘forgiveness’. And like it or not, these constant acts of forgiveness inadvertently add to whites’ perception of African Americans being docile, childlike, and all the other stereotype garbage stemming from an ante-bellum America to make white Americans feel justified about slavery, Jim Crow, and 21st Century Jim Crow. Or it makes them believe faithfully that America is in a post racial society.
This historic white paternalism makes it mandatory that Black people ‘forgive them’ because that paternalistic notion is that whatever punishment is handed down by the ‘massa’ is deserved. So whip the Black into submission so the slave can be happy. Or if he gets too disobedient, you can make him an example by burning him alive with the same enthusiasm as ISIS burns its victims. After slavery, whites could further make examples by lynching and burning Black males alive after they had served in wars without any Due Process from the U.S. Government which aided and abetted terrorism on Black citizens. America’s Black citizens remained the only ethnic group which had to live under the rules of Jim Crow which, contrary to belief, was in both the South and North. The East and West.
What I am getting to is that the word ‘forgiveness’ is a tricky word and an astonishing perception when presented to the wrong crowd. Collectively that crowd is white America which resides in a government which is mired of systemic racism that is cushioned on white fear.
Forgiveness certainly plays well in a white mainstream media which, too, suffers in systemic white fear. Immediately when a young white male is accused of a crime, mainstream media goes to work to gather distractions (reasons) such as blaming Roof’s action on gun-violence, the Confederate flag, mental illness, and last but not least, the N.R.A. It scrambles to find redemption from Black Americans with scenes of Blacks accepting their plight in America. This is why the media praised those members of the massacred victims for forgiving Roof. It lauded these family members to the point where they were no less than saints for forgiving a 21-year-old evil white boy. Forgiving a white person is not so much extraordinary as it is expected. It is America’s hidden Rule of Law that a white can inflict whatever punishment he wants on a Black American because he knows the Black citizen will “forgive” him anyway. Then life goes back to normal once the Black expresses forgiveness. This was why the media presented beautiful scenes of Blacks picking up trash in the aftermath of the Baltimore riots and Freddie Gray’s murder. It is why it so quickly began to paint Trayvon Martin as a drug addict when marijuana was allegedly found in his school locker and that he had been suspended; this is why mainstream media began to label George Zimmerman a ‘white’ Hispanic; this is why the judge at Roof’s bond hearing began to rehabilitate the 21-year-old with his statement (warning? reprimand?) that those listening should remember Roof’s family (later the judge was removed because he had used the N-word in another case; however, the white-owned media didn’t make much of that); then there was a report of Roof having been arrested allegedly on drug charges. Nothing more was heard about that and in that respect he got a better ‘perception’ deal than Trayvon Martin. If Roof had been treated like Black males picked up on drug charges, he would have been pushed so far back in the cell that the nine people he slaughtered would be alive today.
In doing a quick content analysis, one does not find the mainstream media labeling Roof a criminal, a thug, a mass murderer, a killer, a drug addict, an assassin. A monster. Before it’s all said and done, Roof’s action will be attributed to mental illness, lack of gun control, his love for the Confederate flag, and last but not least, the N.R.A.

The rehabilitation of Roof and the subconscious need to reassure whites and mask white fear came out on Sunday, Father’s Day on CBS Sunday Morning and on NBC’s Meet the Press. Some of the victims were fathers and grandfathers. They were denied to live for their loved ones to celebrate them as fathers. Meet the Press chose to show clips from a documentary featuring ONLY incarcerated young Black males talking about their crimes with guns. After a white youth has killed nine Black Americans in a Bible study class, Meet the Press focused ONLY on Black males and gun-violence on Father’s Day? Then there was CBS Sunday Morning which presented a segment devoted on stay-at-home fathers. All the fathers were white and then in the middle of this segment a Black single mother was profiled. Why would CBS do this on Father’s Day? There is such a systemic white fear of Black males that producers of CBS Sunday Morning thought nothing of boldly portraying a Black single mother as a Black father role figure on Father’s Day. Where is the judgment in these presentations after such a tragedy? There was no judgment because ‘subconsciously’ white fear needed to be assuaged. So why not present young Black incarcerated males on a day where Black fatherhood should have been celebrated? Or where the Black fathers who were slaughtered at Emanuel could have been remembered? Why not further emasculate the Black father by presenting him in the form of a Black female serving as a ‘father’ who cannot afford family leave benefits?
Both the Republican Party and the Democratic Party have learned to sell white fear by using Black Americans as a litmus test to measure how ‘conservative’ or ‘liberal’ they are.
There have been only a handful of Republicans and Democrats who have expressed condolences to these nine families and to condemn hate. Most will not express it because they fear that if they openly extend condolences they would be accused of catering to Blacks—and Black is a four-letter word. This is why you hear the anti-welfare bull crap and seldom do you hear of economic solutions. White presidential candidates in both parties are now using the message of ‘it’s time to help the middle class’—code for ‘white’ middle class. ‘Welfare’ and ‘poor’ are negative codes for Black Americans. Even the Democratic Party is staying away from whatever connotes ‘Black’ to lure in more whites, because it knows that it has the Black vote anyway. At the end of the Election Day, both parties will continue white privilege and blame whatever ails America on welfare and the N.R.A.
This Great Nation is running on empty because its agenda continues to be set by two major political parties which use the Race Card to drum up its supporters. Regardless of which party gets into power, the African American community loses. America loses.


See in my psychic there are two types of forgiveness: Spiritual forgiveness and political forgiveness. The spiritual forgiveness is for God and the person extending it to judge and deal with. For good reasons, I am staying out of that one.
Like the family member on ABC’s Good Morning America, I, too, cannot “go there” except to acknowledge that indeed forgiveness is powerful and desirable when it is received correctly. When forgiveness is politicized in terms of Blacks forgiving whites, it has been viewed collectively by whites as a ‘weakness’, and such a gesture opens up the door for ‘permission’ to do it again and again and again. American History bears me out.
African Americans remain the only ethnic group in America that keeps taking abuse until it explodes and riots break out then it goes back into a passive Black mass which is viewed as ‘ill repute’. Both political parties count on this seesaw of passiveness and outbursts to justify domestic policies that do not include Black citizens.
But as I’ve written in earlier columns: Some white people get it; some Hispanics get it; some Oriental Americans get it; some Native Americans get it; some Black Americans get it. Roof’s sister got it when she turned him in. The white woman who followed him and informed the police got it. Roof’s uncle who said that he himself would execute his nephew got it. Hell! Walmart has gotten it by making the decision not to sell Confederate flags. What do they get? That America will spiral into Third World status, not because it continues to operate as a house divided but rather as a house splintered into bits because of this white fear.
To reiterate, ‘forgiveness’ is a powerful word but too often it has been misconstrued as giving ‘permission’ to do it again. American History has validated this pattern.
There is a reason why there was a Joshua who tore down the walls of Jericho. The Joshuas are needed, too, and they need to come out of the woodworks with the same resolve as those who walked the bridge in Selma, sat in the front of the bus, ran the race of Jesse Owens while Hitler looked on proving that the Aryan nation was based on a white inferiority complex that posed as white supremacy. Only God Almighty is Supreme.
And I say to you, Dylann Roof, you are forgiven by some members of the victims’ families. Your character is being systemically re-habilitated but you are in reality a loser, a lazy ass white boy who could have made something of your life but chose not to, you are a murderer, a criminal, a drug addict, a thug, a coward, and you walk underneath the belly of a snake. You are a disgrace to your family, to your country, to your race and to the human race.
And I reiterate to you, Dylan Roof and to those in your KKK and Hitler ilk, that forgiveness does not mean you have permission to do it again.

You see, that’s over. That’s ended. That’s done.

And yes, I have called you out and I am sure I have done it in away some might see in a most un-Christian fashion. Yes, I might have to spend a little time in hell for that, but I feel in my whole heart, mind, and soul, I shall not be there as long as you are and the Hitlers of the world.
And God Almighty help you if you and your haters think forgiveness gives you permission to walk into any Black church to massacre; God Almighty help you if you think you will continue to attack Black boys and men, and drag a 90-something pound Black girl by her hair around on the ground as if she were some small animal you’re trying to cage; God Almighty help you if you think you can continue to turn inner city schools into holding cells for Black children; God Almighty help you Democratic Party and Republican Party if you think you can continue to use Black citizens on Election Day and flush them down the toilet the next day … God Almighty help you Democratic Party and Republican Party if you continue to use Black citizens as strips of paper for litmus tests… the nine people who were massacred in Emanuel A.M.E. were flesh and blood and souls. The only color on those strips was red. Blood. And if you have so much fear in you that you cannot express condolences over that, then you are no better than ISIS! No better than the Dylann Roofs! No better than the KKK! And God Almighty help you white racists if you cross that thin line between ‘forgiveness’ and ‘permission’ and spill Black blood again…And if you do, every Joshua regardless of race, color, or creed needs to crawl out of the woodworks and bring this wall called RACISM down and drag your hateful ass through the backdoor of hell.

Then it’ll be over. It’ll be ended. It’ll be done.
Now let us say, ‘Amen!’


*The above is on the Editorial, Op/Ed, and Black Paper lanes on The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway at . Welcome, Travelers!

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Danny Thomas, FedEx St. Jude Classic, and Lovingkindness

By Arelya J. Mitchell, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief
The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway

At this time of year, two giants meld their signatory names to present what has become a PGA tradition on a different level, charity. We’re talking about the FedEx St. Jude Classic at TPC Southwind which takes place June 8-14 in Memphis. Those two giants are FedEx and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and this event is to benefit the ongoing and much needed research of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital which focuses on the area of childhood cancer. Over the years St. Jude has produced many breakthroughs and has produced gifted and compassionate researchers who have gone on to receive noted accolades and a Nobel Prize in their respective fields.
But none of this would be happening had it not been for a promise the late comedian/actor Danny Thomas made to God when he was at his lowest point and made the simplistic act of going to a church, placing his last seven dollars in an offering, and boldly asking God for a break in his career. He sought the help of St. Jude, considered the saint of lost causes and desperation. The account goes that a week later, Thomas got that big break in his career and his offer of seven dollars grew ten-fold. As Thomas began to accumulate wealth and to see his dream of being successful in Hollywood come to fruition, he never forgot his promise. Of course in today’s world, such a historical account might sound too good to be true, but to those who are desperate and have hit rock bottom, there is nothing false about it. Thomas knew firsthand what it was to be hungry, to struggle, to hope and to dream.

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital serves as a witness to Thomas’ faith.

I am sure many have heard the story but what can be added to Thomas’ story is an architect named Paul Revere Williams**—yes, the irony of a ‘Paul Revere’ coming to the rescue to help Thomas see his dream— is fortuitous. Add to Paul Revere Williams the concept of a Five-Point Star and miraculous pieces begin to fit a puzzling timeframe.
This timeframe is in the early 1960’s when Jim Crow ruled and when poverty and race were determinants in how much and what health care a child would receive. If any.

Paul Revere Williams was African American.

Paul Revere Williams, one of the few Black architects in the nation in the 1950’s and 1960’s, had designed the Thomas house in California. Williams’ parents Chester Stanley Williams, Sr. and Lila A. Williams were Memphians who moved to California for a better life. But what is interesting about the Williams and Thomas connection is that Thomas had envisioned a St. Jude headquarters with a five-point star layout and Williams presented him with a five-point star design when neither had discussed it with the other. Williams donated his designs to Thomas.

Thomas founded St. Jude in 1962. A year later another rebel with a dream by the name of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered a speech that was more controversial than heralded at the time. King dared to deliver what has now become an iconic declaration to erase racism and poverty.

In 1962, Thomas made a similar declaration by establishing a children’s hospital based on need and hope. The main centerpiece of St. Jude was founded on Thomas’ belief that all children regardless of race, color, creed or economic status should be treated. This was unprecedented—yes, even rebellious— as far as race was concerned because it was in a timeframe when hospitals were segregated; when doctors’ offices had “white only” and “black only” signs in the waiting room; when hope was a four-letter word stunted in color and deprivation.

Thomas could have followed the rules and not have had Williams as part of a ‘dream team’ which brought St. Jude into being. Cancer had a sign hung on it; Thomas removed the sign, knowing that all human cells had no color, no race or no creed.

Danny Thomas was a rebel with a dream.

Even in this 21st Century ‘timeframe’, Paul Revere Williams has somewhat become lost as one of the pioneers in Thomas’ vision; and Thomas himself in spite of the numerous St. Jude telethons and events such as the PGA FedEx St. Jude Classic has been lost as an individual who dared to make a socio-economic statement which impacted this nation’s history. Does this sound exaggerated? As giving this man too much credit? As placing him in the ranks of a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and those who dared to break down the barriers of Jim Crow? The fact—and let me repeat—the fact that he opened this hospital’s wings to all children in this time became, too, a plank in the civil rights struggle.

Those ‘few’ visionaries who chose to boldly step with Thomas such as Paul Revere Williams, Dr. Lemuel Diggs, and automobile dealer Anthony Abraham should be remembered as socio-economic leaders in the health field in a time which did not lend itself fully to the spirit of the Hippocratic Oath.

In an era where people are lauded for being famous and little else, Thomas remains an enigma in the realm of a Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., a Mother Teresa , a Bishop Desmond Tutu, a Nelson Mandela, a Mrs. Rosa Parks, an Albert Schweitzer. Why are such people so moved to do what they do? Yes, there are others in this realm who were moved to sacrifice, scrape and scratch out miracles when they should have long given up. Yet, in this realm there are still far too few. Does this sound mushy?

In the Bible there is a word which has always fascinated me. That word is ‘lovingkindness,’ and this is what Thomas exuded when he founded a hospital to treat babies and children and didn’t give a damn about who they were, where they came from, what color they were, what religion they were, what nationality they were, or if they had a penny in the bank to pay for medical care. How easily he could have reneged on his promise, but he chose not.

And if a person can empathize—get to that fine point in a symbolic five-point star where humanity meets and transcends into ‘lovingkindness’ then this is an ideal in making a great nation humane. Yes, such talk could be viewed in the realm of rose-colored idealism, but roses are beautiful, aren’t they? And what’s wrong with a little lovingkindness?

We hope you all will support the FedEx St. Jude Classic at TPC Southwind. And if you cannot come out to support it, you may get more information at on how to donate to this worthwhile charity throughout the year. And to those who are unable to contribute financially, remember your prayers for this institution to continue its growth.

I am sure Danny Thomas would most certainly approve of your prayers and attest that a prayer brought him the vision of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital even in a society that thrives on the ambiguities of political correctness.

Let us continue his work with lovingkindness.


*The above can be found on the Editorial, Op/Ed, Health, and Tennessee lanes on The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway at . Welcome, Travelers!

**For more on Mr. Paul Revere Williams, detour to

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Baltimore and Fear

By Arelya J. Mitchell
The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway

Baltimore is not so much about Black rage as it is about white fear gone amok.

This fear is so entrenched in America’s socio-economic system that it remains invisible as it erodes America into Third World Nation status.

White fear is not talked about because it is not recognized by white psychologists. It is not studied with the same compassion and commitment as that infamous black inferiority complex. Think about it. How many times have you seen on mainstream media a panelists of experts sitting around the table discussing white fear or how that white fear centers on the Black male? Or that white fear is the flipside of a white inferiority complex? I mean if one is a human being one must presuppose that certain traits are shared by other humans: Generosity, greed, jealousy, kindness—and yes, even an inferiority complex.

There’s pedagogic yak that the Black male is inherently criminal and thuggish? Yet, all during the Baltimore unrest coverage, white fear was never brought up. Exactly what do whites fear in Black people, especially Black males? This white fear of the Black male is so entrenched that even if a Corporate America company hires—let’s say three Black men wearing Calvin Klein suits with Ivy League degrees nailed to their backs—the new Black employees are viewed as thugs, and if the three (just three!) of them sit down at the same table in the executive dining room they are viewed as a gang, and the whispers begin: “What are they planning?”

White fear is so systemic that it has bred a level of white populace which can no longer think with brain cells but rather with skin cells. It has produced an arrogance masquerading under white privilege with the same ignorance of monarchies which made them actually believe they had Divine Right. It never occurred to them that those born lower were capable of thinking or had the Divine Right to be mad as hell. When one watches those old Black and white movies on TCM, one hears this arrogance in such lines as “I’m white and twenty-one.”

I watched Baltimore and could see what has been happening for a very long time: Annihilation. Destruction. Waste. Stagnation. Identity crisis. I am not referring to the inner city of Baltimore where the riots and unrest happened, but rather referring to the wealthy and alleged white middle class which looked on either in utter consternation as they wondered why the ‘natives are restless’.

I am referring to a government which is so crouched in a naiveté that all is well on the western front that it has produced a level of white politicos who think with skin cells and little else. The status quo is so color entrenched that it does not recognize that when a 21st Century Baltimore erupts and when nothing is done economically that fertile grounds are laid for homegrown terrorism or that when you have a historic practice of mass incarceration of African American males many of whom were not harden criminal or thugs when they went into the system but would more than likely come out that way because they’re branded like cows on a cattle ranch as future profit for privatized prisons. More beef. To reiterate, white fear is laying fertile grounds for homegrown terrorism. Not riots, but terrorism.

There are some White people who get this; there are some Black people who get this; there are some Brown people who get this; there are some Red people who get this, but their voices are being stamped out with the same systemic branding iron which has labeled them troublemakers.

History flaps the same page back and forth when a segment of society is pushed into despair hopelessness erupts. Hopelessness also creates a layer of fertile ground for haters to rise to the top as leaders on the back of white fear. White fear blames welfare recipients, projects, poor children getting free breakfasts, and it arbitrarily invent rules for activity under the guise of “Law & Order” (Stop and Frisk, three-strikes you’re out, cocaine vs. crack). Just dig up Hitler and ask him about it, as he chose to feed on anti-Jewish fear. He sold this fear to everyday non-Jewish Germans (especially the blue-eyed blond citizens) that the nation was languishing economically and every problem the non-Jewish German citizen had was caused by the Jews. This maneuver of using one group against another transcends race, color, or creed…and it materializes into a 21st Century Baltimore which is a microcosm mirroring a race-infested dysfunctional macrocosm that is collapsing on itself as a ‘house divided’ which cannot stand.

White fear exists. White fear controls. But, ironically, it is spiraling out of control at the expense of a Number One Nation remaining Number One. Blacks collectively are driven towards economic extinction via economic genocide because that white fear is so focused exclusively on keeping Blacks in the economic ghetto.

Now, let’s go to the Black side of things. When you have a group that does not fight back effectively because it continues not to remember its history of being Black in America, it adds fuel to its own economic demise. When you have a group that continues to think with its black skin cells as opposed to its brain cells which created HBCUs, took what was left over from the slave fields and created nourishment from white folks’ scraps, produced Black-owned businesses and sports franchises and frankly didn’t give a damn what white people thought and didn’t mind competing with them because they were taught that if you were Black you had to be three times better—sometimes six! That attitude paid off until Blacks got happy.

I write the following with astute anger: There is an atmosphere in America which is Baltimore; there is a blind stupidity in Baltimore which is America in the 21st Century.

See I don’t want to hear words like ‘healing’, ‘closure’, ‘town hall meetings’, ‘prayer days’ and all the other supposedly ‘good’ code words that do nothing but assuage Black economic pain and white fear when it’s all said and done.

How long can you march? You can march around the Earth twice and tilt it profoundly on its ass—axis, and when you get back, you’re still replicating what was done in the 1960’s when those actions amounted into something constructive, e.g. taking Jim Crow off the law books, gaining voting rights, and equal access to public transportation. White America knows and other ethnic groups know that whenever Black people go off on a (justifiable) deep end, they’re going to march eternally and nothing much else is going to get done after the marching and screaming. Let’s get happy!

See I don’t want to see town hall meetings where Blacks and whites come together to discuss their ‘feelings’ and see these town hall meetings televised via a mainstream media with the whitest newsrooms on this backside of a Civil Rights Movement. I mean, I ask you: Do you really care about anybody’s feelings at this point? After all, at this point like in the old soul tune with the lyric “Fred is dead”, it’s now ‘Freddie’s dead.’

How long can you march without an economic agenda of producing Black-owned businesses and opportunities for Black entrepreneurship to create jobs? See I don’t want to see the handing out of voter’s registration forms as if the Black Vote is the sole cure for whatever ails Black America when in reality both political parties know that the Black Vote has become a placebo to be taken only on Election Day.

Once upon a time the Black Vote meant power. It is now a false pregnancy because it produces nothing but a bastard child both parties use to benefit everything and every other race but Black when the election is over. The Black Vote has become both major parties’ bastard child because they know there is no economic umbilical cord. Other ethnic groups have a group within that group with viable wealth based on ownership—not on consumption (consumerism) as it is with the Black populace— which gives said groups political clout.

Mind you these activities such as marching, protesting, rallies, and prayer meetings are wonderful but they are not ‘good’ because they accomplish nothing but temporary satisfaction if they do not dovetail with ‘constructive action’ and not reaction. You see, Freddie’s still dead.

I looked out over a wave of protesters in the sea of despair as they swam up on shore still drowning. One was proud that they kept the pressure on. One heard speaker after speaker. One was proud of the speakers. And yes, I must add here, I do believe in prayers but I also believe with the prayers, marches, rallies, someone somewhere should have been able to pull out at least five persons and taken a Number 2 pencil and a yellow legal pad and drawn up an economic plan that goes beyond such ‘training’ programs than a proverbial “My Brother’s Keeper” which is no more than a reincarnated 21st Century C.E.T.A. program. You see, white-owned businesses get access to capital to create jobs to create more capital. Blacks get ‘training’ programs and blame.

Where were the Black economists? Black economists exist but they remain out of a dialogue from the White House to a Baltimore. There are astute business oriented ministers who preach economic-ownership along with prayer and can provide input. A Black economic think tank should have been created and this is where the next Black leadership should emerge.

Black economists can formulate that X-number of Black-owned businesses must be brought to fruition to produce jobs along with other mainstream companies such as a CVS or the like. The sin of America is that Black America has never been allowed to own its capitalism—its own means of production. White fear continues to act as overseer just as it did when whites massacred hundreds of Black citizens of such thriving communities as Rosewood, Florida and what was known as “Black Wall Street” in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Whites became so afraid of these two townships that were producing wealth and Black-ownership even under Jim Crow that they barged in and slaughtered Black American citizens with the same venom as Hitler did the Jews. Throughout American history, case upon case has been recorded that when a Black got something better than a white—be it a shiny new car, new shoes—or could speak using more than one syllable, the hidden policy was that it was time to barge in, cordon off, and destroy Black achievement. Everyone knows that if there are two Black males and one needed shoes and one had a plan to build a shoe factory and both wanted access to capital and went to a wealthy white philanthropist billionaire, it’s the one who wanted a pair of shoes who would be helped; the one who had a plan for a shoe factory would be dismissed and viewed as a threat. This is why it is easier for white wealthy ‘benefactors’ to give charity to Blacks but not access to capital. This is white fear rearing its ugly head even at the top of the Fortune and Forbes lists of people who operate on noblesse oblige rather than on reality. Traditionally, it’s called white paternalism.

This remains a Katrinanized nation as in post-Katrina when a federal government claimed that it could not find even one Black-owned construction company (A matter duly documented at the time by Cong. Bennie G. Thompson** who testified in a Senate hearing on Hurricane Katrina contracting abuses…but don’t get me started on Katrina), or when the U.S. Department of Agriculture aided and abetted Big Banks in stealing Black farmland (a suit that was eventually settled in the 21st Century after decades of litigation). This is how white America plays the Race Card which it put in the deck and has kept in the deck. I’ll say it again: Nobody loves a poor Black person like America.

See, Black America, you are not in America’s economic agenda. You don’t get to go to Cuba to do business. You don’t even get to go to South Africa or any other part of Africa to do business. Black economists are not invited for input. The only thing black America is cognizant of is oil. Period. If you are not on the agenda in a world where globalization is more than on an atlas, then you are simply slated for economic extinction via economic genocide. It might be best that you pick up Psalms 91 along with organizing and demanding to be included in America’s capitalism. And to you, Black men, you are still viewed as thugs and a gang even in Calvin Klein suits while you sit with two other (tokens) Black males in the executive dining room. It’s time for you to Black Man Up!

You see, Freddie’s dead. Freddie Gray represents one end of the spectrum which is a dead-end just as those Black children who can excel and want to excel represent the other end of the spectrum which, too, is a dead-end. The Black child remains expendable.

But as I’ve written: Some Blacks get it; some whites get it. Because they know that if you don’t straightened this mess out economically, this whole country will implode economically because it cannot continue to produce a white populace which can only think with skin cells because of an inbred hemophiliac sense of white privilege. It will implode economically because this nation cannot continue to produce a Black populace which continues to operate on Black skin cells because of some inbred hemophiliac sense of not being able to take names and kick fiduciary ass when needed, or have the sense that there is a profound difference between being a Christian and being a fool or continue to march without an economic agenda beyond job training.

Freddie’s dead.

See, I don’t want to see pretty little pictures of Blacks out there cleaning up the neighborhood, sweeping the sidewalks, picking up trash in post-riot. I don’t want to hear the garbage of Blacks destroying their own neighborhoods when in essence they do not own these rotting neighborhoods amid the wealthy Baltimore which thinks nothing of wasting human resources encased in Black bodies just to make sure Freddie stays dead. I would have rather seen Blacks walking straight past the rubble into a Sunday School classroom or free library meeting room to draw up an economic agenda. I want a yell out to Black economists sitting in their pristine HBCU classrooms or Ivy League Universities to take leadership roles.

Hell! You can clean up later because in reality it’s later than you think anyway.

Yes, these are pretty little pictures for mainstream media dispensing the illusion that when Black people clean up trash they’re being responsible ‘Black’ citizens. But they never examine the ‘white’ trash of the privileged who sit and judge.

Freddie’s dead.

See, I don’t want to see any mourning of a CVS when Freddie’s dead and the Black child remains expendable behind the bars of an inferior public school system.

You can rebuild CVS, but you can’t rebuild Freddie.

And if CVS returns then a Black group of regular everyday Black people should put together their one dollar bills and buy stock in CVS or any other mainstream company which comes in, and if these companies start doing something that is detrimental to that Black community’s monetary growth then call in the marchers to shareholder meetings. Hell! March where the mansions are if you don’t get what you want and need when you have a right to live on safe streets in safe houses and afford a Disney World vacation just as any member of America’s disappearing white middle class. Or to ride in a gyroscope over the White House and fear not being riddled with bullets. Bring back the Black Wall Street blueprint and 60’s boycotts and build on that.

And if CVS decides not to return, well at least it’s alive.

Freddie’s dead. Freddie was dead long before he died.


*The above is on the Editorial and Black Paper lanes on The Mid-South Tribune and Black Information Highway. **Cong. Bennie G. Thompson’s Katrina Letters are found on the Letters & Statements lane on the Black Information Highway at . Welcome, Travelers!

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Lynching Lynch; Why Tom Cotton Should Be Attorney General

By Arelya J. Mitchell, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief
The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway

On St. Patrick’s Day, I participated in a press conference call hosted by African American leaders. The purpose of the call was to “urge the Senate to move ahead with the long overdue confirmation vote on Loretta Lynch’s nomination for Attorney General.” Wade Henderson, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, served as both moderator and progenitor of getting out this urgent call.

For the record, we endorse Ms. Loretta Lynch for Attorney General.

If Loretta Lynch gets past the quagmire of Republican senators who have chosen to block the nomination, she would become the nation’s first African American female Attorney General. Even the Republican stalwarts have admitted that she is more than qualified. But one would imagine with all the publicity surrounding this nomination that most of you know about her qualifications and her standing to make American history so much so that it’s become saprophytic in public opinion. So, let’s not dwell on these factors or that there persists a systemic degradation of Black women where it has become implicitly and tacitly acceptable.

Senator Mitch McConnell’s anti-Lynch campaign has reached such mammoth proportion that it is making history of its own in positioning Lynch to have waited longer than anyone for this nomination. As of this writing, Lynch is in her 139th day of being an Attorney General-in waiting.

Mitch McConnell has decided to blockade her nomination for a variety of alleged reasons from President Obama’s immigration policies to WHATEVER.

On the March 17th press conference panel were: Sherrilyn Ifill, president and director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund; Cong. Marcia L. Fudge of Ohio; Cong. G.K. Butterfield of North Carolina, chair of the Congressional Black Caucus; and Dr. Paulette C. Walker, national president of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

During the conference call, we received a statement from Senator Bob Corker’s office which stated that he would not be voting in favor of Lynch. We later received a statement from Senator Lamar Alexander that he, too, would not vote for Lynch.

Indeed, I read and re-read with extreme interest their statements along with some other Republican ‘literature’ on this matter, and I came to the conclusion that since Mitch has mounted such a sophisticated campaign against Lynch that he and his comrades should persuade President Obama to pull his nomination from Lynch and to instead nominate Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas. Of course, many citizens know that Cotton recently wrote an Open Letter the Leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran instructing them that the president can only serve two terms and that senators can serve longer to demonstrate his prowess in political dialectics.

Cotton, at age 36 and as a freshman senator, has proven his leadership ability when he led 46 Republicans to sign his letter. Though our esteemed senators from Tennessee did not sign Tommy’s letter, they should nevertheless give Tommy their support to become one of the youngest attorney generals in American history.
Little Tommy deserves to be Attorney General by the mere fact he has managed to escape charges of treason and of being brought before the ethics committee, and he has shucked off labels of traitor and immaturity— yes, and even possible felon charges for violating the Logan Act and boldly ‘going where no senator has gone before’. Of course, if Tommy had been a member of the Black Caucus or if he had been a member of the Hispanic Caucus or of the Women’s Caucus and led their respective members to write an open letter to the “Leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran” during sensitive nuclear negotiations, he would have had papers drawn up on him so fast that the speed of light would have slowed to mass.

Sen. Corker was elegant in his assessment of why he could not support Lynch and why I believe he would support Tommy. The Senator stated: “The job of the U.S. attorney general is to enforce federal laws as written, not as the administration wishes they were written. While I believe Ms. Lynch is an impressive attorney and a committed public servant, nothing revealed during our personal meeting or at her confirmation hearing has assured me that she will be an independent attorney general and refrain from selective enforcement of the law, and therefore I will not be supporting her confirmation.”

Tommy boy certainly thought it a grand idea not to abide by laws written forbidding him from inserting himself directly into treaty making. Yet, Tommy is so brilliant that he has received no reprimand from the Chairman of the Foreign Relations committee which is Corker by the way. Of course, the good Senator from Tennessee knows that Tommy will “refrain from selective enforcement of the law” – international or otherwise. Surely, he knows this.

Ahhhh, but Tommy is mesmerizing. Tommy is charming. Tommy can lead sheep.

I am sure our Sen. Lamar Alexander would support him. Alexander has enjoyed for many years the support of African Americans’ and Black mayors’ support and endorsements in West Tennessee. These African Americans on many occasions crossed the traditional Democratic Party line and voted for Alexander. But, alas, Senator Alexander has chosen to rape a Black woman of becoming the first African American female to serve as Attorney General because as he has stated in his statement of March 17th : “I will vote against President Obama’s nomination of Loretta Lynch for attorney general of the United States. This is an opportunity, within the Senate rules, to express my disapproval of the president’s abuse of executive authority, and it’s an opportunity I intend to take.” His statement continues that Lynch’s nomination “should be decided by a majority vote of senators, as cabinet nominations have been decided throughout the history of the Senate.”

Alexander’s camp places at the end of his statement: “On Feb 4 Alexander and Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) introduced legislation to establish by Senate rule the Senate tradition of approving presidential nominations by a simple majority vote, rather than the 60 votes it would take to end a filibuster. Alexander said that, according to information compiled by the Senate historian and the Congressional Research Service, in the entire history of the U.S. Senate since Thomas Jefferson wrote the rules in 1789, no cabinet nominee has ever been denied confirmation by requiring 60 votes to end a filibuster.”

Perhaps our honorable Senator from Tennessee should have implored the Senate historian and Congressional Research Service to research “in the entire history of the U.S. Senate” regarding what little Tommy did when he wrote ‘The Letter’ during nuclear negotiations to a sovereign state. But, of course, we must overlook what little Tommy did because he probably thought Sovereign was indeed one of the 50 states. And boys will be boys.

Of course, if Loretta Lynch would change her name to Loretta Lynn, the two Tennessee boys would probably support her.
Yes, Loretta Lynch should chill out. Go back and continue to work her present job. The President should leave the Attorney General position vacant, and there should be a countdown on how long it can remain vacant. A lottery can be attached to this historical countdown. Funds collected could be given to little Tommy who can use it to continue to suck his thumb. Starbucks could sponsor this campaign as an offshoot of its Race Together campaign.

Of course, Alexander has some explaining to do the next time he seeks Black votes in West Tennessee and struts into Black churches and speaks before Black church women groups or to Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. or to any other Black woman sorority. He is apt to find a whole lot of (Do forgive my stereotype here) Angry Black Women staring down his throat.

Oh, Lamar, Lamar, Lamar. Black women are mounting a blockade of their own and they are taking names to kick posteriors.
Am I being harsh in describing this holdup of Loretta Lynch’s nomination by using the word ‘rape’ which has long been the ‘peculiar’ situation of Black women in America’s history, then let me be harsher: Not only is Loretta Lynch being symbolically raped, she is also the victim of a public lynching mainly by a bunch of white boys who call themselves U.S. Senators with Mitch leading the Lynch-mob.

And to those who think I am being unprofessional. Yes, I am. And you can give my gold star to little Tommy, mean ole Mitch who has been behaving like a witch, the Tennessee tag team of Lamar and Bob, and the rest of the ‘Lynch’ mob who continue to waste tax payers dollars by stalling approval of this nomination possibly until 2017—the deadline little Tommy told the “Leaders” of Iran that the President will end his term in office.

Too bad, in the capacity of Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell has hardened his heart with the same stubbornness as Pharaoh. And we all know how that turned out.


*The above is on the Editorial, Op Ed, Black History, and Black Paper lanes on The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway at . Welcome, Travelers!

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Why the 47 Senators Should be Charged with Treason

By Arelya J. Mitchell, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief
The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway

Has common sense just been stripped naked and run into the street into the arms of a straitjacket?
This is the only way I can describe the action of 47 renegade Republican senators who took it upon themselves to write an Open Letter to the Islamic Republic of Iran. The letter’s content is elementary, insulting, and stupid. One saving grace is that the Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker did not participate. Corker is a Republican representing Tennessee.
On Tuesday, a Corker aide gave the following statement to The Mid-South Tribune: “As chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Senator Corker’s focus is on getting a veto-proof majority to support his bipartisan bill for congressional review of any comprehensive nuclear agreement with Iran.” (Also, for the record Tennessee’s other senator, Lamar Alexander, who was a one-time presidential contender, did not sign the letter). On Thursday, March 12, Corker’s office put out a press release outlining the steps on what would be done to pass a bipartisan bill he and his team constructed to deal with the Iranian nuclear talks. The press release laid out step by step on what has to happen in the Senate to get a majority of votes for his bill. There is no requirement in there that senators must explain the procedures to a foreign government.
Amid all this, the media’s preoccupation has been over the storm of Hillary Clinton’s email-gate while overlooking the tsunami of the gravity of this Open Letter which is nothing short of treason. And yes, there is a race factor to this quasi coup to overthrow a president who is African American, because the 47 would not have committed such a grave act had this president been white. (And to those who believe racism had nothing to do with this in any form or fashion, then you should take up residence on an island and drink your milk from a coconut.).
If the renegades wanted to write an Open Letter, they could have addressed it to the American public and they could have laid out intelligently why they were in disagreement with the president’s nuclear negotiations with the Iranian government. They could have followed the leadership of Corker who put forth his bill entitled “The Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015” which was introduced on March 12. Corker did not condone what the 47 did, though in the press release, he sort of chalked their juvenile behavior up to “The fact is there is so much passion around this issue because the White House is stiff-arming [Congress]…People on both sides of the aisle believe that is wrong…”

Corker has to be kind to his fellow party members; whereas, “passion” is not the word I would substitute for ‘stupid.’
The letter is formally addressed as “An Open Letter to the Leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran” and begins:

“It has come to our attention while observing your nuclear negotiations with our government that you may not fully understand our constitutional system.”

The letter presupposes that the Iranians are so dumb that they have no idea how the U.S. Government works – even on this elementary political level. I dare say that the Iranians are more aware of how the U.S. government and most of its constitutional accoutrements work better than the 47 know how the Iranian government works. Also, the question begs: What did the 47 “observe” which made them think that “Leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran” “may not fully understand” the American constitution?

Now that the 47 having “observed” this, they go on to write to the “Leaders”: “Thus, we are writing to bring to your attention two features of our Constitution—the power to make binding international agreements and the different character of federal offices— which you should seriously consider as negotiations progress.” This sounds as if the 47 have taken it upon themselves to threaten the “Leaders” of Iran if the Iranians even consider what the Administration is trying to negotiate. Threat is the key word here.

Okay, let’s read further what the renegades wrote and delivered to the “Leaders” of a sovereign nation of which this sovereign nation is currently in nuclear negotiations with: “First, under our Constitution, while the president negotiates international agreements, Congress plays the significant role of ratifying them. In the case of a treaty, the Senate must ratify it by a two-thirds vote. A so-called congressional-executive agreement requires a majority vote in both the House and the Senate (which, because of procedural rules, effectively means a three-fifths vote in the Senate). Anything not approved by Congress is a mere executive agreement.”
Now, let’s sit back and drink our Kool-Aid here. International treaties are negotiated among sovereign nations to sovereign nations. Individuals, groups, or 47 senate renegades in the Legislative Branch cannot lawfully posture themselves as this nation’s official negotiator. This is done through the Executive Branch. The 47 trespassed onto the Executive Branch’s grounds and admitted such by stating “…while the president negotiates international agreements…” Exactly what words in this phrase did the 47 not understand?

Now I hope those who like or don’t like the president’s policies (and I have certainly disagreed with him and his administration on occasions), will continue to read the 47’s next paragraph which they wrote to the “Leaders” of a sovereign nation informing the “Leaders” that whatever the president does is a “mere executive agreement”.
The 47 continue: “Second, the offices of our Constitution have different characteristics. For example, the president may serve two 4-year terms, whereas senators may serve an unlimited number of 6-year terms. As applied today, for instance, President Obama will leave office in January 2017, while most of us will remain in office well beyond then— perhaps decades.”
To those who have not been stripped of their common sense, please re-read this. Examine the term “as applied today”. The president’s term has long been established in the Constitution. Obviously, the 47 have presupposed that the “Leaders” have no idea how long senators and presidents serve in office. Also, there is no other way to interpret this paragraph other than the 47 have flat out told the “Leaders” of a sovereign nation that the U.S. Legislative Branch can override the Executive Branch in foreign affairs to speak directly to another sovereign; thus, posturing themselves as the legal and true negotiators in foreign affairs. Not only did the 47 say it, they did it!
Never mind that the Executive Branch has been the face of and official negotiator of this nation since George Washington became president. There is a chain of command and protocols which the renegades knowingly broke as they were led by their renegade leader, Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas who could demonstrate in a Spelling Bee contest that he would have trouble spelling “I”.
As chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Corker can ‘spell’. In fact, in his press release, the Senator ‘spelled’ out these protocols and procedures which the 47 operating on an 8th grade herd mentality deliberately and spitefully chose to ‘teach’ directly to the “Leaders”. This smacks of that White Western-Euro-centric paternalistic-colonialist-jingoist mentality demonstrated throughout history when the ‘natives are restless’. This mentality has no place in U.S. 21st Century foreign relations.
Let’s take another sip of Kool-Aid and continue the 47’s open letter to the “Leaders”: “What these two constitutional provisions mean is that we will consider any agreement regarding your nuclear-weapons program that is not approved by the Congress as nothing more than an executive agreement between President Obama and Ayatollah Khamenei. The next president could revoke such an executive agreement with the stroke of a pen and future Congresses could modify the terms of the agreement at any time.”

These are strong words with implied retaliation should an agreement be struck.

Again, to the folks who still have common sense, re-read this paragraph and do keep in mind that the renegades are speaking down to the “Leaders” ; threatening the “Leaders” that the Legislative Branch will undo whatever “President Obama” does because “future Congresses” can strike it down with the “stroke of a pen” and “modify the agreement at any time.” Therefore, the 47 have laid out clearly that they are, ironically, above the Constitution of the United States. This paragraph goes beyond party lines.

This action sends the signal to any sovereign state that members of Congress can interfere DIRECTLY by placing themselves as ‘official’ arbitrators in treaty-making. There are three fronts upon which this precedent has become more dangerous: First, because the 47 represent nearly half of the U.S. Senate, they cannot be viewed as a typical group disenchanted with their government. Any sovereign nation wishing to do so can use their behavior as an excuse not to negotiate with any president in the future—yes, beyond 2017 as the 47 wrote. Second: These negotiations are taking place with a Middle East sovereign government. This is a sensitive geo-political-religion area of vast diversity which the U.S. foreign policy is searching to find solutions and common ground. This is about nuclear negotiations which may or may not be fruitful. What if the 47 existed when John F. Kennedy dealt with the Cuban missile crisis? Would they have directly engaged in these negotiations as members of the Legislative Branch or have behaved as such during the Korean or Vietnam Conflicts or while Bush was dealing with Iraq? Third, the mainstream media has miserably informed the public of the gravity of the 47’s action by presenting it solely or mostly in terms of Republicans vs. Democrats, and that the 47’s action is no more than politics as usual when there is a constitutional crisis issue in play.

Now, let’s wrap this up with how the 47 ended the letter to the “Leaders”: “We hope this letter enriches your knowledge of our constitutional system and promotes mutual understanding and clarity as nuclear negotiations progress.”
(For the record, this op/ed piece contains the full text of the 47’s letter and most certainly can be read without my commentary.).

The 47 should be charged with treason.

This should be done as a signal to other sovereign nations that U.S. foreign policy is not conducted by Legislative Branch renegades. Perception is very much catalytic as variables and indicators in a nation’s foreign policy. Treason charges may or may not be fully carried out, but the papers should be drawn up and put in for the record and put on the 47’s record with the same gusto of those who have attempted time and time to impeach the president on various charges which do not have nearly the consequences of what has been done by the 47’s recklessness.
Their action trumps party affiliation.


*This article can be found on the Op/Ed and Editorial lanes on The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway at .
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SELMA and LBJ Spinners

By Arelya J. Mitchell, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief
The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway

In the last century, an elderly African American gentleman, who was also an activist, political advisor, businessman, and historian, said to me that if Black people did not record and pay attention to their history that it wouldn’t take long before Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. would be portrayed in movies as a white man leading Black people out of Jim Crow bondage. His prediction came pretty close with the controversy surrounding the movie “Selma” with LBJ spinners asserting that the Selma march was President Lyndon Baines Johnson’s idea. They have spun their web to the point of having mainstream media believe that had it not been for Johnson the Selma march never would have taken place. Because the movie was so heavily criticized by LBJ agitators, the Academy Awards snatched up their spin to justify not giving the film its due respect and reason to go back to a lily white field of nominees in every major category, saving one black spot for “Selma” in the Best Picture category.

One must remember Marshall McLuhan saying that “the medium is the message,” and when the mainstream media decided to give its medium to LBJ anti-Selma agitators without presenting adequately the other side’s viewpoint(s), it further begrudged the movie of its due respect. Interesting how no ‘white liberal’ came out openly to defend the movie (and if one did, you have my apology).

“Selma” the march is history; “Selma,” the movie is history. And politics as back then abounds as it does now when it comes to American Black History. If this message of how Blacks themselves not only thought of Selma, but created it, marched in it, led it, and took the brunt of it fails to get out, it allows LBJ spinners to get away with killing the messenger (the movie) and the message (history) while controlling the (mainstream) medium, and to further belittle King as no more than LBJ’s puppet and African Americans as insignificant in securing their march towards freedom.

I recently received an advance copy of “Eye of the Struggle,” the biography of Ms. Ethel Payne, which I shall be reviewing at a later date. The biography, written by James McGrath Morris, clarifies even further my assertion and the movie’s portrayal of Johnson’s role in the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights bill. Johnson’s role in Morris’ book is in black and white (pun intended) but blends into ‘gray’ into a body of chapters detailing Ethel Payne’s journalistic coverage of Johnson from the 1950’s to his White House years. Payne, known as the First Lady of the Black Press, was the only Black journalist Johnson gave a souvenir pen to after signing the 1965 Voting Rights Bill.

“Eye of the Struggle” (HarperCollins Publishers) will hit the bookstands and e-book stands on February 17, and it should be read by every white journalist working in mainstream press—if they’re brave enough to do so (which probably they’re not because their self-righteousness ‘objectivity’ might not be able to take it…moving on).

When there are movies which portray Blacks as being in charge and taking charge of their socio-economic-political predicament, it produces white fear. This is a harsh assessment, and I make no attempt to politically correct it. “Selma” produced white fear albeit unnecessary fear. That ‘fear’ protruded its fangs from these LBJ spinners. Because sometimes, you see, a movie is more than a movie. It is a political statement. It is a socio-economic statement. It is vomit. And vomiting is not a pleasant thing. Yet, it is sometimes induced. Selma induced vomit. It made a political statement just as “To Kill A Mockingbird”; but unlike, “To Kill A Mockingbird,” it did NOT present African Americans as victims. Its message was to create white guilt through symbolically representing Black people as ‘mockingbirds’— creatures so small and helpless that it is a sin to kill them. And throughout cinematic history and American history, Blacks have been viewed as hapless victims or happy victims; nevertheless, victims; thus, creating a medium for “To Kill A Mockingbird” to be praised and for “Selma” to be slammed.

As stated earlier, Selma induced vomit. For it to have done that made it a strong, smelly movie to stomach for those who want to rewrite history by ‘not’ putting President Johnson in his historical perspective which is that Johnson wanted no more to deal with Black civil rights than Kennedy did or Eisenhower or Nixon. (Again, I underscore the Ethel Payne biography as further testimony to these men’s dilemma and the politics of Southern appeasement).

Some LBJ spinners have held up the secret FBI tape of a conversation King and LBJ had in which LBJ is telling King that if he (King) could stir up enough discontent that could drum up enough outrage then it might be easier for him (Johnson) to get a Voters Rights bill passed. The movie also depicted Johnson offering King a position in his administration. Both of these gestures were not so much about Johnson suggesting a Selma march as about Johnson trying to stop the march or at best get King off the subject of voting rights in that usual white modus operandi of telling Blacks to ‘wait’ longer because in Johnson’s estimation he’d done enough by signing the 1964 Civil Rights Bill. Remember, it is now 1965 and King and other Black leaders are viewed as Negro radicals and troublemakers’ because they went against the status quo. King and others had been thrown in jail for their civil protests countless times. (During these times not only were King and other Black activists being wiretapped by FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, but Black press journalists as well. This, too, is documented in “Eye of the Struggle”.)

Johnson made his ‘stir up’ suggestions with the same ‘logic’ whites have used on Blacks to slow them down: Now if you do ‘ABC’ then you can have it. And once the Black American citizen does ABC and he returns and then it comes to ‘Now if you can do DEF,’ then when all the alphabets are used up, it becomes now if ‘you can do 1, 2, 3’…’ This has long been a southern plantation-like political tactic not only employed in the South but the North as well. Why? Because the one suggesting the ABC-1,2,3’ lingo figures that if he can delay or waylay a Black from action long enough then the Black would tire himself out and forget the whole thing. (To those who don’t understand this maneuver, I really don’t care… moving on). And the other tactic is to offer the Black a nice fat cushiony position so the target Black can ‘forget’. This is why LBJ offered a Nobel Peace Prize-winning King a position in his administration. Not from the goodness or his heart but from the Willie Lynch maneuvering of taking out and down the troublemaking Black who is well—making—trouble and cannot ‘wait’.

Civil rights events were forced on both Kennedy and Johnson and where they are to be credited is that they made a moral decision in spite of that morality having been forced by politics—national and international. One has to remember that African nations were coming out from under Euro-colonialism and these nations were cradles of oil, diamonds, and other natural resources. Neither LBJ nor JFK was a Quaker. They were not ‘John Browns’. In fact, they were not white men who would volunteer to go to the frontline to endure the pangs and pains of Freedom Summer, street beatings, and being killed and maimed alongside their fellow Black American citizens. Those were the ‘unknown’ white American citizens who hit the street or dug through the Underground Railroad on moral grounds and there is no ground deeper than moral ground. There is no ground bloodier than moral ground. It is the moral ground where graves are dug to six feet but where humanity springs up six thousand feet because it springs from blood, bravery and the gall to say hell NO!

Perhaps in the scheme of what I think of as ‘spiritual’ history, I view the 1960’s Johnson as rectifying what the 1860’s Johnson did not do after Lincoln’s assassination. That (Andrew) Johnson did not live up to the promises of the 13th , 14th, and 15th Amendments or Reconstruction which if had been done right, we as a nation would not be having the racial issues we have in the 21st Century.
And still as history will bear out: Black Americans themselves took the lead FIRST in securing their freedom. Nat Turner did not ask the white man’s permission to rebel. Rosa Parks did not ask the white man’s permission to sit down in the front of the bus. Emmett Till’s mother did not ask the white man’s permission to open her son’s coffin. Ida B. Wells did not ask the white man’s permission to print the names of those Blacks lynched throughout the nation—not just in the South—while a federal government aided and abetted in silence. Frederick Douglass did not ask the white man’s permission to put forth his philosophy that Blacks needed to make ‘demands’ if they wanted equality. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. did not ask white permission to lead the Selma march no more than he did to lead what was in fact the ‘second’ March on Washington. (Again, the first March on Washington is historically laid out in Payne’s bio).
Those Blacks who sat at their kitchen tables or in church basements or in front bedrooms did not ask permission to plan, organize and execute this march. The FACT that Blacks did it and the FACT that this movie portrays their ‘strategizing’ – this ability of Blacks to ‘think’—can be a disturbing consequence of the movie for those—such as the LBJ spinners—who would like to ‘think’ that Black Americans cannot ‘think’, plan, and execute and—yes—rise up from the blood that spilt that day as it drained into AMERICAN HISTORY as America’s white terrorists beat them mercilessly. These LBJ agitators do not want to think that Blacks can sit in a room, argue over ideals and ideas, and then come out unified and walk over a damn bridge their tax money paid for!
They walked over that damn bridge to the other side. They spilt the blood to cross bridge. They endured the ‘terrorism’ in America’s culture against its Black citizens. To call Klan and Klan-like atrocities anything other than terrorism is to dignify hate.

They. Walked. Over. The. Bridge.

And to you LBJ spinners who dare not put his actions in historical perspective, and to those in mainstream media who are too lazy to speak to those Black Americans who are alive and who took the brunt of this march, and to those in the Academy Awards who seek to revert to Clorox white by any excuse necessary, you don’t have the power to kill this movie or its message, because you will never bury Selma because Selma rests in moral grounds, the bloodiest of grounds.
And as God is my witness: The African Americans who wrote, produced, acted in, and marched out front with “Selma” did not ask permission to make this movie or needed Hollywood’s green stamp of approval. They made it anyway and in the fashion Blacks have always had to create and make it: On air and prayer.

And they damn well did it up!

And lest we forget–

They. Too. Walked. Over. The. Bridge.


The above is on the Editorial, Op Ed, Black History, and Black Paper lanes on The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway at . Welcome, Travelers!

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President Obama, Cuba, and BRICS

By Arelya J. Mitchell, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief
The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway

Finally! Someone has used common sense and brought down the ‘wall’ between the United States and Cuba. That someone is President Barack Obama who deserves the same credit with the same verve as President Ronald Reagan who boldly prompted, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!” And the wall between East Germany and West Germany eventually fell.

Obama did what should have been done 20 or 30 years ago, though I highly suspect this giant move was made to checkmate Putin and BRICS more so than from an antiquated American foreign policy regarding Cuba. Needless to say but I’ll say it anyway: This policy has made America look stupid. If this nation can recognize Russia and China–the biggest purveyors of Cold War communism– and not recognize Cuba was not only making the U.S. look stupid but bullying—and that was long before Obama took office. This was a policy of cutting off one’s nose in spite of one’s face which demonstrated that this country was making a mockery of its own Monroe Doctrine—you know, the vestibule of that ‘sphere of influence’ concept. Last July, Vladimir Putin figuratively mooned Obama and the U.S. when he came to this tiny island nation to wine and dine the Castro boys and maybe—just maybe—finish what Khrushchev started by making Cuba a platform for Russia’s strategic arms.

BRICS is an economic organization consisting of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. BRICS was founded roughly in 2009 (with a bunch of meetings leading up to its official founding) on the premise that the U.S.A. and its traditional Euro-allies did not give a damn about nations of color and emerging nations. Russia considers itself an emerging or rather a re-emerging nation as it comes off a collapsed Communist economy. It doesn’t take an accountant to see that two of Earth’s most populous nations—China and India—are already members of BRICS. South Africa, its newest member added the ‘S’ to what was then BRIC. South Africa is a nation of color and a prototype of what is to come to a 21st Century Black Africa: Capitalism and the ample supply of Black consumers.

Continent Africa offers new markets for both neo-capitalists and neo-communists who may morph into neo-colonialists if Africans don’t watch their backs and remember their history of Euro-colonialism. China has already begun laying out its wares in Continent Africa and building an economic infrastructure there to benefit itself. And please don’t think the U.S. called its first U.S.-Africa Summit because it has seen the light of historically violating its own Constitution in reference to the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments which beget segregation birthed by Jim Crow.
By the same token, it is no coincidence that America elected its first ‘African’ American president more so out of economic pragmatism than out of moral ‘naturalism’ (that all men are created equal or with those ‘inalienable rights’). Most of those billionaires and zillionaires who initially jumped on Obama’s presidential bandwagon were looking 10 and 20 years down the road—that’s why they’re billionaires and zillionaires. So to those few Black American entrepreneurs and business persons who were invited to the first White House U.S.-Africa summit, you served no more than a welcome doormat for white Corporate America and an equally white Corporate Silicon Valley to come in to personally wine and dine leaders of African nations while leaving your black butts on the doorstep– if you don’t find a way to get a piece of the action. Hate to break it to you: You’re not part of this economic equation called Africa. This is a subject matter upon which I shall visit but I have neither the space nor the inclination to do so now.

Dare I say that Czar Putin was looking forward to adding another alphabet to BRICS? Yes, I dare and I dare say that this latest downfall of the ruble has to do with BRICS’ attempts to create its own central bank that would afford loans and access to capital to nations of color and a monetary unit equivalent to the Euro.

BRICS also has been eyeing Nigeria, one of the world’s leading oil producing nations. The president made the historic and welcomed announcement on Cuba on December 17, 2014. The next day I participated in a press conference call on the upswing of the American economy. That, too, was good news, but what I found interesting was a reporter bringing up why the United States was not buying more oil from Nigeria? The answer was murky at best from the White House participants of Jeff Zients, National Economic Council Director; Cecilia Muñoz, Director of the Domestic Policy Council and Secretary Thomas Pérez, U.S. Department of Labor. (And if one were to be really a tad sarcastic, one sees there were certainly no Black economists involved from the White House— oh, but (a ‘sarcasm’ alert here!) how could I forget? There are no Black economists…but I digress). But, of course, in light of the slaughter of towns and the kidnapping of young girls, it’s understandable why the Nigeria question was murky.

To reiterate, BRICS has already added that ‘S’ as in South Africa and there is a profound reason why South Africa joined BRICS, and that is because the United Nations and its IMF draw a dark broad color line between Euro/Western nations and nations of color. Underneath hugging Cuba, there is an economic war between BRICS and the UN; between BRICS and NATO. And underneath this is yet another chess move of the U.S. being forced to play nice with its Latin American and South American neighbors. Yes, the U.S. has to look at forming better cross-national relations with its ‘sphere of influence’ neighbors because one day it may have to lead the dollar in creating a new monetary unit with these neighbors to offset and/or compete with the Euro—oh, but wait! BRICS has already begun to dance down that yellow ‘brick’ road because these ‘sphere of influence’ nations are not enamored of the Euro, seeing it as a symbol of discriminating against emerging nations and nations of color.

One indicator being when Putin made his summer tour to court other Latin American and South American nations, throwing in Russia’s $30-plus billion forgiveness of Cuban debt to Russia. Another chess move was for the U.S. to undermine the ruble because if it is to weaken BRICS then it needs to damage the lead player, which is Putin. So, if the ruble is diminished the dollar will rise and should at least (for the time being) put a stop to whatever BRICS monetary unit being created as I write this. But if the U.S. leads in creating one monetary unit that can be used throughout the Americas then that’s a game changer.

You see, not only is there the classic scale to balance in nuclear arms, there is a 21st Century scale to balance in currency invoking yet another warfront. Money has yet to fail in being utilized as a weapon of mass destruction in its own right.
Now having said all this, let me do add that I was jumping with joy when Jay-Z and Beyonce—two African American entrepreneurs– made their special tour of Cuba. This should serve as a model that Black American entrepreneurs and Black business owners had best get in the game of this new Cuban market opening. The Black American business community should not do as it has done too many times which is to stand back and wait for the cows to come home, because too many times the cows come back as packaged beef ready to be consumed by Blacks with no capitalistic benefit to them. Yes, it’s time to get those passports ready, Black ‘American’ business folks, to do business in a nation that was once your brethren Black slave-holding nation, too.

Again, President Obama should be applauded for having the guts to make this decision on December 17, 2014. And he really shouldn’t worry about those Republicans who are threatening to stop this move. I mean I am willing to go to the casino and bet my bottom dollar that these particular Republicans’ lobbyists and BFFs in Corporate America and Silicon Valley have already called them up and simply said: “Shut the ‘Duck’ up! There’s gold in them thar Cuban hills!


*The above is on the Editorial and Op/Ed lanes on The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway at . Welcome, Travelers!

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Roger Goodell, Ray Rice, Janay, and Holy Hell Matrimony

By Arelya J. Mitchell, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief
The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway

If Roger Goodell loses his position as NFL commissioner over the Ray Rice vs. Janay Rice Elevator Theater, he may very well be like the cop who intervened in a domestic violence dispute between husband and wife and ended up pushing up daisies. And guess what? After the cop has been buried six feet under, wifey and hubby will rush lovingly into each other’s arms while the cop’s widow(er) cries at the funeral with their children short of a parent. The couple will continue this cycle drawing more victims into their web of holy hell matrimony.
Of course, Ray Rice should not have knocked Janay out cold, but apparently he knocked her into amnesia because she quickly forgot that he did it then dragged her out of the elevator as if she were a corpse not even bothering to call 911.
One has to wonder what’s love got to do with it? (Echoing Tina Turner).
Outside of the outrage and manic calls for zero tolerance regarding this prize fight in the elevator, there is an equal outrage when one attempts to utter the question of why did Janay Palmer decide to walk down the aisle with the bastard after he’d knocked her a few steps from Kingdom Come? But I’ll get back to this in a bit.
First of all, I don’t believe in a Zero Tolerance policy. That is about as much of a sick joke as a One-Hundred Percent Tolerance policy—and can be about as brutal in enforcement. But I’ll get back to this, too, in a bit.

Everyone is on a media seesaw of whether or not Goodell saw all of the TMZ/police- provided tapes. And if he did, why didn’t he dish out a meatier punishment to Ray Rice? Oh let me go ahead and say the unpardonable with utmost political incorrectness: Whether Goodell saw the tapes or not should be placed in another frame to get a more realistic picture.
That fancy frame is called MARRIAGE. And one might even subtract a few letters and call it a mirage, because no one really knows what’s going on inside this venerable institution which sometimes has the illusion of being something it is not.
I am willing to bet my best wig that this wasn’t the first time Rice has used his wife for helmet practice, and I am sure someone in both their respective families knew of incidents and probably tried to talk to them out of continuing this relationship.

Then Goodell gets dragged in this situation called marriage which is probably worse than any situation he’s been in since he took the throne of commissioner in the land called NFL.

Marriage is not so easily dealt with as matters such as Jonathan Vilma (whom Goodell overly punished when Vilma demanded that the NFL prove the charges brought against him), or his stiff punishment of New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton or when he dealt with the Miami Dolphin crybaby who wept because some white boy called him the N-word (a situation where one 300 pound-plus player bullied another 300 pound-plus player), or Michael Vick and the dogs.
But in the Rices’ case, Goodell is actually behaving like an average person.

Now how will the average person behave after he or she sees such a tape then learns that the fiancée instead of calling off the engagement chooses to put on her lovely white gown, invites over a slew of guests, and walks down the aisle with a man who has beaten the hell out of her — all this within a span of a day or two of knocking her out. Sometimes these average human beings are invited to such weddings when they know of or have witnessed such domestic violence with said couple. They’re there with eyes bucked wondering how such a couple could tie the knot but choose to hold their tongues when the minister asks if anyone objects to the marriage.

Yes, one gets suspicious how quickly Janay Palmer Rice walked down the aisle then did a ‘stand by your man’ press conference with Rice. Suspicious of what? That this was an attempt to save Rice’s career on behalf of Rice himself and herself. Losing $40 million and a slew of Nike commercials can put a dint in a young couple’s lifestyle of the rich and infamous. Hopefully, Janay had enough sense to get an ironclad prenup agreement which can guarantee her a great lifestyle if d-i-v-o-r-c-e happens or a good burial plan if he gives her the fatal blow. Either way, she might do well to meet with both an attorney and a mortician (and yes, I am being dead serious, pun intended).
To reiterate this is about domestic abuse inside a marriage, and those who saw the first Godfather movie know that Sonny got riddled with bullets when he rushed over to defend his pregnant sister whose husband was beating the crap out of her. Sonny didn’t make it, and in the end of this domestic dispute, his sister went back to hubby and stayed with him until Michael had him strangled.

Should Goodell have Ray Rice strangled?

There have been cases of women who knowingly go into and remain in marriages and willingly take beatings so they can remain Mrs. V.I.P. Now how do you explain them?
Again, marriage is a different beast. Historically it is understood that there are certain grounds of holy matrimony that both church and secular laws protect such as a wife cannot testify against her husband or vice versa or that divorce is a sin or a wife must ‘obey’ and submit to her husband and all the other concoctions of excuses to accommodate domestic abuse. Yes, this Rice marriage may be as perverse as she may love him, but she may love his pocketbook more; he may love her but he may love beating her more to empower some sick ass ego.
This brings us back to the aforementioned paragraph regarding the outrage of how dare anyone ask Janay Rice why she chose to walk down the aisle with Ray-Ray? Why many are equating this question with ‘blaming the victim’ when in fact it is a legitimate question and she should answer it. She did not file charges of assault and battery or whatever other charge she could have thrown in the legal kitchen sink.
Goodell might have felt a little more empowered to act stronger had the former Miss Janay Palmer not married Rice a day or two or less or whatever fraction of a time frame after the elevator drama?
All of which is to bring out the point that Goodell is not a marriage counselor, he is not a minister, he is not the law. He’s about as bewildered as many, thinking that if she married him maybe the two straightened out everything as obnoxious as it was. Yes, there should be a Domestic Abuse policy in the NFL corporate code of conduct, but even with such a policy, marriage remains a murky area fraught with legalities, moralities, and religiosities which no man (not even Goodell) can safely put asunder.

As for any Zero Tolerance policy, that can be abused as much as those who abuse, and it has been when one looks at cases where a six-year-old boy can be accused of sexual misconduct and kicked out of first grade because he kissed his little girl classmate; or a teenage girl takes an aspirin and gets suspended from school with the same severity as one who took cocaine. Zero Tolerance in the public school system has been implemented more to punish Black boys than white boys for the same violations or to punish Hispanic and poor white children.
In extreme cases one thinks of Emmett Till who was tortured for whistling at a white woman which was apparently against Jim Crow law!! This was a race-based Zero Tolerance policy which immediately called for the castration or downright killing of any Black male glancing at a white woman (e.g. a sort of “To Kill a Mockingbird” syndrome) or another case where a Black woman cried rape and an entire lacrosse team of white boys was suspended and some of its members kicked out of school only later for the public to discover that she lied simply because no one bothered to ask her ‘why did you go back inside to get your purse after you’d been raped?’ I remember thinking of this question because I knew no woman in her right mind would return to a place where she’d been raped to get her purse? She might return with a shotgun or the police but not to retrieve her purse. And then one looks at super stars Rhianna and Chris Brown who seem to be lovey dovey after he painted her face black and blue which didn’t come from makeup. And those who had involved themselves or gotten themselves dragged into their mess have every right—let me repeat—every right to ask her ‘why is she so cozy with him now? Why has she gone back into his arms?’ I am sure she would say that it is ‘none of the public’s business’, which is essentially what Janay Rice is espousing on her Twitter, Facebook, or whatever social P.R. media account where she is begging for the public’s understanding. I don’t understand it. To be blunt at this stage of whatever game they’re playing, I don’t even care to understand it, because there are real victims out there trying desperately to get out of dangerous relationships.
Like it or not, Goodell is part of that average Joe (or Josephine) who just might not understand as well, but wrings his hands in frustration because he is damned either way he goes; he is like the cop who got caught in the middle only to get his head blown off; he is the relative or friend who waits for that call from the emergency room or morgue because they have tried everything in their power to help.
In the history of my life as a journalist, I have seen on occasion both men and women make accusations about each other abusing the other just to get the other into legal trouble. Such deadly games can be played inside marriages; thus, giving a bad name to true victims of domestic abuse and violence.
Even after punishment by law or the proverbial public lynching or job suspensions or the guilty verdict from the court of public opinion, there is a type of woman who runs back to these men who abuse them.
Yes, I use the word ‘type’ because there is also the other ‘type’ of woman who doesn’t take this crap, who doesn’t tolerate it or who fights back as best she can. These are real victims of abuse and should not be blamed. These are the lost voices with only a Tina Turner serving as a role model of a woman who went through hell before getting away. She left with a gas credit card and a few pennies, and never went back. Turner had less legal protection then than what women have now. There are some women who still cannot get away because the men are tracking them down to get revenge or to inflict on them some other abuse one can only imagine or not. Funds, counseling, and jobs should be provided to aid and abet these women in getting away.

With all due respect, those who are screaming for Goodell’s head should advocate for women who are really going through hell, who can’t afford legal aid, who have no place to go. Ray Rice should make a sizable contribution to them, even if I believe that he is feeling more sorry for being caught than for knocking out his now wife. And now that NOW has the NFL by its balls, it along with the National Council of Negro Women (the oldest Black women’s organization in the country) should use this predicament to develop in conjunction with the NFL a comprehensive program for these rich boys to learn to keep their fists to themselves.
What there should be is a Common Sense Tolerance policy. Any case of domestic abuse should be done on a case by case basis. To further stretch the point: That catchall zero tolerance policy is about as fair as cutting off a person’s hand who stole a loaf of bread instead of finding out ‘why’ he stole the loaf of bread: from hunger or because he felt like it. Either way, losing your hands does not fit the crime. And having said that, someone needs to ask Rice ‘Why?’ before they condemn him to a career of no return like in forever. There have been many stories in the rumor mill such as she allegedly spat on him and he reacted or that she came at him first and he reacted.

Make no mistake: I am neither on Rice’s side nor on hers. As a man, he should have never put his hands—hard fists—on her; as a woman she shouldn’t have walked down the aisle with him practically within a 48 hour period. Bottom line: The real problem is in this couple which believed marriage could offset a violent relationship which could more than likely escalate.

But like so many who have involved themselves or gotten caught up in such holy hell matrimony, Goodell has found himself in a mess of trouble which rhymes with ‘hit’.


*The above commentary is also on the Op/Ed, Editorial, and Black Paper lanes on The Mid-South Tribune and Black Information Highway at . Welcome, Travelers!

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Obama vs. Putin, Timetables, Ukraine, and Terrorists

By Arelya J. Mitchell, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief
The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway

When President Barack Obama announced that the U.S. would pull out of Afghanistan in 2016, I did not so much think that he had given a timetable to the terrorists (which he did) as some have argued but rather that he had inadvertently given one to Vladimir Putin.

Now Czar Putin knows that he has roughly two years to take control of all of Ukraine under the guise of a civil war as he awaits for a new American president (an unknown entity) while taking full advantage of America fighting two wars simultaneously. And as of this writing, the group ISIS seems to be gaining ground in Iraq and that, too, adds to America’s preoccupation. Putin more than likely will never have this perfect storm opportunity again to climb back onto that Balance of Power scale where the Soviet Union once stood in the era of Nikita Khrushchev. Putin wants this; he wants Russia to return as a player on the international game board. And from the looks of it, he is enjoying toying with President Obama knowing that he doesn’t have to play chess or checkers when he’s dealing with an opponent who is playing jacks. He’s had Obama standing at podiums announcing that he and Putin are speaking via phone, discussing, and all the other pronouncements that talks with Putin were moving towards some meaningful resolve to the Ukrainian crisis only to end up as one-sided conversations.

On May 28, 2014 when President Obama gave his commencement speech to the graduates of West Point Academy, I listened to him not so much as his being the president of the ‘Number One Nation’ in the world but as his being a commander-in-chief of the ‘Number One Nation’ in the world. I am sure Czar Putin was listening, too, along with terrorist groups ranging from the sophisticated ones who know the primer of chemical warfare and guerilla tactics to the ragtag ones who get their kicks from kidnapping defenseless little girls. Both sectors want to take down the Number One Nation mainly for no other reason than just to say they took out the Number One Nation. By its very nature being Number One invites challenges. That type of warfare mindset goes back all the way to ancient times and not much has changed in a 21st Century. There will always be those who ‘want to rule the world’ and that forces war and change.

All roads at one time led to Rome and once upon a time the sun never set on the British Empire.

What was monumental in the president’s speech as the commander-in-chief was his making a demarcation that the U.S.A. will not continue to act as a savior to nations that find themselves in conflict and running to the U.S.A. for help. Ironically, this is what is happening now with Iraq which now wants the U.S.A.’s help in putting down the group ISIS which is said to be more aggressive than Al Qaeda.

Of course, when the U.S.A. stays beyond that help, it is run out of town on a rail; thus, incurring the tag ‘loser’ which this nation has been labeled post World War II. Then, of course again, nations are more prone to become saviors to secure their own interests when it’s about oil and other natural resources than they are when it’s about humanitarian reasons. Historically, powerful nations have the propensity to put in place the weakest of leadership they know they can control; thus, such situations as ISIS moving into Iraq should have been expected because ISIS knows, too, the leaders put in place in the name of democracy are essentially rabbits and will run at the first sign of a scuffle (I haven’t the space to expound on this but will do so in a later article).

I agree with Obama that this nation must send the message that it is not the world’s savior. However, in foreign policy, even though the average citizen doesn’t want to think about foreign policy to begin with, perception is a quasi-living being. At the West Point commencement, he sent this message with a posture of weakness, and somewhere Theodore Roosevelt’s “Speak softly and carry a Big Stick” posture was lost in Obama’s highly anticipated speech to set his “vision” for America’s foreign policy.

He began strongly: “Today, according to self-described realists, conflicts in Syria or Ukraine or the Central African Republic are not ours to solve. And not surprisingly, after costly wars and continuing challenges here at home, that view is shared by many Americans. A different view from interventionists from the left and right says that we ignore these conflicts at our own peril; that America’s willingness to apply force around the world is the ultimate safeguard against chaos, and America’s failure to act in the face of Syrian brutality or Russian provocations not only violates our conscience, but invites escalating aggression in the future. And each side can point to history to support its claims. But I believe neither view fully speaks to the demands of this moment. It is absolutely true that in the 21st century American isolationism is not an option. We don’t have a choice to ignore what happens beyond our borders…”

After the president began with this strong statement that the nation would no longer engage itself in every (or every other) conflict, he dragged his speech into what I thought was one for goldfish to swim in. The fish were pretty but they really weren’t going anywhere.

The speech became so intellectualized that it was sanitized. It gave little reference to the Russo-Ukraine conflict other than the Ukrainian citizens had voted for a new president and a few other mild mannered sentences.

There was no force or fire which would have stressed his vision that America’s new stance did not mean that the world and/or terrorists should take its kindness for weakness.

The speech dragged on in such an unconvincing tone that West Pointers seemed about as disinterested as Obama himself in the speech. He even went into global warming so I can only view that if the sun went out that would end all wars anyway. This speech created a ‘disconnect’ between himself as commander-in-chief and those under his command. There was nil applause where he obviously wanted more enthusiasm. Sure, he made reference to Dwight D. Eisenhower, stating: “As General Eisenhower, someone with hard-earned knowledge on this subject, said at this ceremony in 1947: ‘War is mankind’s most tragic and stupid folly; to seek or advise its deliberate provocation is a black crime against all men.’ Like Eisenhower, this generation of men and women in uniform know all too well the wages of war, and that includes those of you here at West Point…”

What Obama failed to mention is that Eisenhower was a realist. I would venture to say that Eisenhower as most people didn’t want war or liked war, but there are in fact people who do like war and people who want war and people who have no problem in engaging in war. How hard is that to figure out? Eisenhower was a manager of warfare, a strategist in warfare. Had America gone to war after he had become president, you can bet your bottom dollar Eisenhower would have behaved as a true commander-in-chief. Allies or not, Khrushchev would not have tested Eisenhower as he did Kennedy. Kennedy stood up and Khrushchev backed down; thus, mutual respect and maybe even mutual fear set the agenda. Yes, Eisenhower had met enough tests in World War II. Kennedy served in World War II and knew war up close and personal having been wounded in it. The point being made here is that neither presidents wanted war but they found themselves engaged in war and stepped up to the plate either on the battlefield or from the Oval Office.

Obama is such an elitist, such an intellectual, that he seemingly thinks he can continually sit down and talk and talk to the enemy and make them see reason because underneath his own reasoning is that he has the upper hand because he is the suave sophisticated intellectual who prides himself on being so above the fray that he doesn’t recognize the fray. To make matters worse, he views (or rather gives the impression) those whom he is trying to make see reason as essentially having no intelligence. This is not an administration which seeks out those with different opinions or those with expertise; this is an administration which seeks heaven on earth. It is an administration that seemingly thinks the likes of a Sen. John McCain or those in his ilk are so Vietnam-centric and hawk-driven that they are relics in a 21st Century. When in fact McCain is a realist who does not love war, but knows there can be war. Furthermore, he knows you damn well better win the war or there will be hell to pay in trying to attain heaven. One cannot give out timetables and have nothing to back it except goodwill and smiles. ISIS loved the goodwill and smiles and more than likely loved Obama’s pretty little speech before the nation’s most esteemed warriors. These groups, too, are warriors. They thrive on war. And their perception of a leader is their truth. And to reiterate, perception in international relations is a quasi-living being.

Ironically, Obama’s viewpoint and estranged philosophy is no more than the extreme left version of why America’s foreign policy fails just as it does with the extreme right version. Why? Because both versions reside in an archaic Western/Euro-centric thinking that the ‘natives’ can be controlled, never realizing that the ‘natives’ can think, too. The natives epitomized as the Third World/Developing Nations and/or the terrorist groups from those with a sophisticated technological network to the rag tag terrorist groups that kidnap little girls now perceive America’s commander- in-chief as weak.

And to be politically incorrect, let me mention the elephant in the room because he’s sitting right there: Unfortunately, Black males in America are already perceived as ‘weak’ post King and Malcolm X. For the record, I did not say they were ‘weak’ but perceived as weak. Whoever becomes the first female president will have this same problem to deal with. This is a world perception of the Black American male and of females regardless of female’s race, color or creed. Any woman who aspires to achieve can attest to the latter. Mandela, an African male leader would not have been tested as would have an African American male head of state. Moving on.

Putin certainly sees Obama as weak; he toys with him while the ‘natives’ are sitting in the balcony eating popcorn watching these two world leaders duke it out. And they are rooting for Putin in that ‘the enemy of my enemy is my friend’. They may not like him, but they respect him because he comes off as strong by telling Obama to go to hell in so many words and gestures.

America’s foreign policy remains common-sense challenged, because the foreign policy makers have yet to learn – from left to right—that when weak and controllable persons are propped up as ‘presidents’ of newly formed democracies (e.g. South Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc.) they will be easily toppled when America pulls out, especially when a ‘specific’ timetable is given. You don’t put the cats in charge and not expect the dogs to come in.

And getting back to the man of the hour, Putin: He picked up on Obama’s naiveté when Obama threatened sanctions on him and his inner circle of plutocrats. They were no doubt filing their fingernails as Obama gave them weeks upon weeks notice that he was going to put sanctions on Russia’s billionaires. If you were a Russian billionaire, would you not move your funds and secure your funds seeing that you got weeks of advance notice that someone was coming after your money? How dumb was that? That was so dumb that I am sure the Russian plutocrats and Putin (one of the richest men in the world) are munching on caviar and vodka resting their feet on gold bars while managing to see secure international bankers who had no problem accommodating them for the right price. Putting sanctions on Russia has made Putin more popular to Russians who view this act with the same indignation as Americans who would behave the same way were sanctions put on the U.S.A. Like it or not: Russia is Russia and to have put sanctions on it is also in the same vein as putting sanctions on Great Britain or France. As a matter of fact, one does not see Great Britain or France or Germany—our allies—chomping at the bit to really punish Putin. They need Russian pipelines and if the truth be told, they are sick and tired of engaging in America’s wars where there are no exit strategies or as in Obama’s case, no common sense of any consequence of what can happen once you pull out.

Then the Czar has stood before the world and announced that he wants America to get the hell off the International Space Station by 2020 and that Russia will no longer be NASA’s BFF. Of course, he can smile and tell this president anything and could very well kick NASA out before 2020. As I said before, Putin thrives on underestimation. Coupled with all this is the waltz Putin has orchestrated in Ukraine by bringing his troops two steps inside Ukraine and taking one step back as his ski-mask wearing agitators work their way inside Ukraine’s belly to provoke civil war while he cuts off Ukraine’s utilities. To reiterate, he probably now has a two-year plan to pull off a ‘civil war’ victory—physically and symbolically.

Yes, Putin is making all of these overt moves before 2016, because he knows he’s dealing with a president who wears rose-colored glasses.

As I’ve written: Czar Putin is a bastard but a brilliant bastard. He continually makes a fool of Obama each time Obama picks up the phone thinking Putin is going to see reason. Seemingly Obama actually believes he can talk the Czar into seeing reason. Seemingly he actually believes he is the more intellectual of the two and that somehow intellectualism will win out. Putin laughs and instead runs to the U.N. demanding that the U.N. should make Ukraine cease fire immediately. He paints Ukraine as the aggressor, knowing no one believes it, but it makes a mockery of the Obama.

At the end of the day Putin would have positioned himself to go into Syria, Iran or anywhere else that is anti-American or anti-American inclined and set up his own NATO-like organization to reincarnate the Warsaw Pact. So what will we have here? A New Axis? Already he is more welcomed in these places because he stood up to the U.S. sanctions. If he takes all of Ukraine under the guise of a civil war, he can send his own envoys in to dialogue with practically every terrorist group from the sophisticated (such as ISIS) to the ragtag ones at some point in time.

What should the U.S. do now? Certainly not boots on the ground because that’s embracing the conventional for the unconventional. What has to happen is for newly-elected Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (with all his billions and contacts) to bring in his own mercenaries and soldiers under that same guise of civil war as Putin has done. Poroshenko needs to play the same mind games as Putin. Such as when Putin went to the U.N. to demand that Ukraine cease fire; Poroshenko needs to go to the U.N. and to make worse accusations against Russia. In other words, Ukraine needs to be ready to win its ‘civil war’ and play chess. The U.S. needs to be even more open about supporting Ukraine’s efforts and then clandestinely aid and abet Ukraine to provide weaponry to Poroshenko’s ‘loyal’ mercenaries who should be expert in guerilla warfare. Furthermore, Polish troops also should go in clandestinely in with their ski masks, and other troops from nations that feel themselves threatened should Russia revert to re-gathering Cold War territories.

Yes, one can certainly see the role of “Captain Phillips” being recast. Putin is now simply saying to Obama: “Look at me. Look at me. I am the Captain now.” Getting Crimea was good; getting all of Ukraine would be even better in re-establishing Russia on the Balance of Power.

Bottom line: Ukraine has to win the ‘civil war’ because it is the ‘civil war’ which is the real war, and the U.S. has to at least look like it has backed a winner for a change.


*The above is on the Black Paper, Op/Ed, Editorial, and International lanes on The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway on . Welcome, Travelers!

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