April 1, 2013

April 1, 2013

President George W. Bush presents the Medal of Honor to neurosurgeon Ben Carson. Image source: www.examiner.com

Dr. Ben Carson is a well-trained plantation fox, guarding the hen house of White supremacy. He is infected with the delusion of individualism and Bill Cosby boot-strapitis. He can be found on his way to the White House, tripping the political, racist land mines set for his demise. Just think, he could live in Baltimore, not far from me. Well, there goes the neighborhood.

"Lonely Hearts" by Baltimore's Demi Lashawn.

The crisis of empathy is a great danger to the individual. It separates us from the pain that is felt universally. It stunts our ability to conceive of anything better in how we could live our lives. It is when we can tear down the fences that we build within ourselves, and undergo that transformation—from hostility to warmth, from suspicion to a welcoming embrace, from bitterness to tenderness—we find a power that cannot be taken from us.

Contributor Cory McCray. Photo source: corymccray.com

Have you ever heard of Transform Baltimore? Well a few months ago, I read an article about the initiative to create healthier neighborhoods/communities within Baltimore City. I was most impressed by the conversations about reducing the amount of liquor stores in the urban community. I thought that everyone was aware of the damage that corners inundated with liquor stores can produce, and how the Transform Baltimore initiative to have liquor stores follow the laws on the books would eventually reduce the problem and send Baltimore in the right direction. Well, the no-brainer isn’t really a no-brainer.

President Asif Ali Zardari of Pakistan, center, is accompanied by aides as he visits with members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee in Washington in this May 5, 2009 file photo. (Photo: Jim Wilson / The New York Times)

Pakistan is not the only country flouting US sanctions. According to Flynt Leverett, a professor at Pennsylvania State University and author of Going to Tehran, a growing list of countries including China, Russia, Turkey, and India are resisting US sanctions because of their own economic needs and because of the wider principle that they should not be bound by American legislation. "It is essentially the US making a kind of hegemonic assertion, which is not grounded in international law," he says, "and could be held to violate US commitments under the World Trade Organization."

Image source: www.bartcop.com

The word “entitlement” had prestige and dignity before the party of “no” got its hands on it. The point is that these programs are being hotly debated and politicized in the deficit reduction melee on Capitol Hill. The racialization of the issue is a common strategy to turn serious discourse on its head and rally irrational support by appealing to embedded racial stereotypes.

By the time you read this I will have been held prisoner for four months... on misdemeanor charges! This fact being one the popular press conveniently chooses to omit. Continually we see the government (via police statements, State's Attorney, even judges) attempt to convey things in a more alarming depiction than reality holds. Their co-conspirators in the press do little to counter these deceptions. If it wasn't for the fact that these sort of omissions are quite selective, my protestations could readily be dismissed as mere whining, but pay attention and observe.

Oriole Park at Camden Yards from the Third Baseline. Photo By: Kate Drabinski.

On March 24th, 2013, local historians, activists, and interested parties gathered at Camden and S. Eutaw to join in the unveiling of a new plaque commemorating the Great Railroad Strike of 1877. The plaque joins a slew of public memorials in this part of southwest Baltimore but was the first recognizing the role of laborers and their struggles in the making of this place.