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Friday, February 12, 2016
Southern Weather Radar


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    racist act of terror

    Keep your prayers, Nikki…

    by | Jun 22, 2015
    Dismantle Hate, Black Lives Matter (Candlelight Vigil for Victims of Charleston Mother Emanuel AME Church Shooting) - by Light Brigading

    These past few days I have been frantically trying to wrap my brain around the slaughter of nine African-American men and women at the Emmanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston S.C last Wednesday night.

    The crime was heinous, profane and an extreme act of cowardice. It was pre-meditated, mindful and calculated. Above all — it was a racist act of terror.

     

     

    incomprehensible

    Charleston shooting brings sadness, shock, anger, frustration

    by | Jun 22, 2015
    Dozens of bouquets lined a sidewalk Thursday outside Emanuel AMC Church in Charleston. The display board still lists the late Sen. Clementa Pinckney as the church's pastor.

    As I headed to bed Wednesday night, a white gunman shot and killed nine people in an historic black church in the center of town just four blocks from where I used to live. Unaware of the evil, sleep came quickly. But in the wee hours, the ping of a text from an Australian colleague woke me. I didn’t want to read it and tried to go back to sleep. But after tossing and turning, I read the text, only to learn the heart-wrenching news about what was going on a few miles away. I was dazed.

     

     

    bin-yah

    Reflections of a Southerner on Fathers’ Day

    by | Jun 20, 2015
    Reflections of a Southerner on Fathers’ Day

    I did not personally know the beautiful souls who were massacred while gathered in prayer with a stranger at Mother Emanuel on June 17, 2015, but I can’t stop weeping.  In part, my tears are the product of troubled introspection.  I am a proud southerner with deep roots.  My father has always been puzzled by my “ancestor worship.”  My husband and children mock my addiction to ancestry.com with quips like,  “did you know Mom is 99.9% Anglo-Saxon and cousin of the Queen?”  But I can’t help but feel pride when I find another link on my family tree confirming my forefathers’ presence south of the Mason-Dixon line before secession.

     

     

    laudato si'

    Francis’ Momentous Encyclical: On Care for Our Common Home

    by | Jun 19, 2015
    Click for full text of Laudato Si'

    “We are in trouble just now because we do not have a good story. We are between stories.” — Father Thomas Berry

    I’m not Catholic. Nevertheless, fond of this pope, I’ve eagerly awaited the release of Laudato Si’, Francis’ encyclical on ecology and climate. Immediately after its June 18 release, I paged wildly through it and was blown away. Laudato Si’ is absolutely stunning in sweep, depth, and wisdom. It is exactly the right document, at the right moment, by the right person.

     

     

    confronting hate

    Soul Searching, Not Denial, Is the Way Forward from Charleston

    by | Jun 19, 2015
    Soul Searching, Not Denial, Is the Way Forward from Charleston

    With so many people professing concern for saving the souls of others, we have precious few willing to search their own. Facts about the Emanuel AME Church massacre in Charleston are yet unfolding, but political machinations to deny the obvious racial motives speak volumes about our society’s inability to confront this issue.

    The alleged actions of a hate-filled young white man accused by police of slaying nine black church goers in Charleston say nothing about me as a white man living in America.

     

     

    playing a patient game

    FIFA FI FO Thumb, I Smell the Blood of a Rotten Russian Man

    by | Jun 6, 2015
    FIFA FI FO Thumb, I Smell the Blood of a Rotten Russian Man

    Virtually every caricature cartoon has Putin always beating Obama at chess. Stupidparty love to suggest that Obama is playing checkers against a chess grand-master. Odd since chess would be beyond their powers. Perhaps we should revisit this issue.

    Not long ago a strapping Russian super hero, overwhelmingly proud of his disturbing mix of a jedi judo six pack physique and chess thumping grand master heritage, was strutting half naked across the world stage seemingly out maneuvering any mortal who got in his way. A Palin with a brain, his task made easy by a disingenuous myopic American administration through 2008 being held in contempt in the court of world opinion…

     

     

    nra gun myths reevaluated

    The Deconstruction of a discredited Gundermenatist Rock Star

    by | May 20, 2015
    The Deconstruction of a discredited Gundermenatist Rock Star

    Ironically – let us begin with a Joke.

    Man walking along a road in the countryside comes across a shepherd and a huge flock of sheep. Tells the shepherd, “I will bet you $100 against one of your sheep that I can tell you the exact number in this flock.” The shepherd thinks it over; it’s a big flock so he takes the bet. “973,” says the man. The shepherd is astonished, because that is exactly right. Says “OK, I’m a man of my word, take an animal.” Man picks one up and begins to walk away…

     

     

    bb king

    The Thrill is Gone

    by | May 15, 2015
    BB King

    When my cellphone rings, the opening notes of The Thrill is Gone signal me. I will have to consider changing that now. The author and singer of that song has moved on to Rock and Roll Heaven. B. B. King died in his sleep Thursday after nearly a year in hospice. I can’t imagine anyone was surprised; death happens to us all and this one has been imminent for quite some time. But hearing him tell me the thrill is indeed gone might be more than I want to hear every time my phone rings.

     

     

    great sucking sound

    A Multinational Trojan Horse: The Trans-Pacific Partnership

    by | May 7, 2015
    The Procession of the Trojan Horse into Troy about 1760 by Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo via Wikipedia.org (public domain) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trojan_Horse

    “The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, … may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny.” – James Madison in The Federalist Papers.

    You don’t have to know much about the “trade” deal called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to be more than a little suspicious. First, there are the very peculiar bedfellows. Supporting the TPP are President Obama and most Congressional Republicans, the same Republicans who’ve vehemently opposed his every initiative for the past six and one-half years.

     

     

    stupid, stupid, stupid

    The Mathematics of Guns and Violence in the US Compared to the World

    by | May 7, 2015
    The Mathematics of Guns and Violence in the US Compared to the World

    It is projected that sometime in 2015, Gun Deaths will become more ubiquitous in the USA than Auto fatalities — at over 30,000 lives per year. By way of comparison in the UK Automobiles are 1,300% more deadly than Guns (using 2011 data).

    Baltimore represents the inevitable confluence of trends that only spell more disaster down the road. The trends at play are: 1) Gun Culture 2) Inherent deep rooted Bigotry and 3) the disenfranchisement of the voters –with the consequent undermining of Democracy.

     

     

    religious intolerance act

    A new thought has come into being: “Thank God for Indiana”

    by | Apr 3, 2015
    Mike Pence of Indiana - Anti-Gay Crusader

    For years, you have heard people in the South say: “Thank God for Mississippi!”

    They meant that were it not for that state, their own state might rank 50th out of 50 states in some category. Mississippi has traditionally ranked 50th in educational attainment, family income, education and other indices. These other states of the South were mighty pleased that their own state didn’t rank below Mississippi. Of course, their state might rank close to Mississippi, but not dead last.

     

     

    banning mermaids

    More reasons for Georgia’s state legislature to meet less often

    by | Mar 26, 2015
    More reasons for Georgia's state legislature to meet less often

    Some of my readers at Gwinnett Forum have asked if I was serious about requiring that the Georgia General Assembly meet only once in every two years.

    In short, you betcha! Why? Because most Georgians will tell you that nothing is safe when the Georgia Legislature meets, as members introduce all sorts of measures that negatively impacts its citizens, most bills only benefiting some local constituent.

     

     

    compounding mendacity

    Settlement or Extortion?

    by | Mar 22, 2015
    Image: composite image created for LikeTheDew.com - aerial photo by James Holland Photography; Mr. Moneybags a Monopoly image (fair use).

    The reports of a settlement on Sea Island, Georgia, are disturbing on many counts, not the least of which is that the Sea Island Company no longer exists. Not only have many of the assets of the bankrupt, family-owned firm been acquired by an artificial body that called itself “Sea Island Acquisitions,” as if acquisition were an honorable enterprise, but that Limited Liability (little responsibility) Corporation has now morphed into an alphabet string that’s not even a pronounceable acronym, SIA PROPCO II, LLC…

     

     

    georgia sb 139

    Left Holding the Bag

    by | Mar 6, 2015
    Left Holding the Bag

    A healthy by-product of opening my mouth to criticize others is being forced to assess the risk of having to eat my own words. I’ve learned the hard way to find my weaknesses before others do it for me. It saves glass walls if I can just hit myself with the rocks inside the house.

    Last week, I tweeted disappointment with the Georgia Senate for passing SB 129 which blocks local governments from banning plastic bags.

     

     

    in sports metaphor

    Clock Is Ticking for Leaders to Solve Georgia Transportation Woes

    by | Feb 11, 2015
    Clock Is Ticking for Leaders to Solve Georgia Transportation Woes

    Georgia’s transportation game clock was ticking its final minutes when a 2012 “Hail Mary” pass fell with a thud far from the intended receiver. Uncomfortable with the game on the line, leaders in the General Assembly and the Governor’s Mansion pitched a panicked audible to voters and local governments with the T-SPLOST referendum. Its rejection left leaderless chaos for two-a-half years, during which we’ve seen little reason for hope and backsliding across metropolitan Atlanta.

     

     

    government fail

    Bad Boys… Whatcha Gonna Do?

    by | Feb 1, 2015
    Newton County Courthouse Covington, Ga

    A situation vexing Newton County citizens for years erupted on metro Atlanta airwaves this week when television station 11 Alive aired stories of an ongoing investigation into payments made to county attorney Tommy Craig. Unanimously reappointed this month by the Board of Commissioners amid a public outcry of opposition, Craig was paid a reported $1.1 million by the county in 2014. He was also the center of much controversy last year when citizens questioned the reported $21.6 million spent to date on a reservoir project championed and managed by Craig…

     

     

    anything to win

    It Matters How You Get There

    by | Jan 26, 2015
    It Matters How You Get There

    I sympathize with those brushing aside the “Deflategate” scandal swirling around the New England Patriots as much ado over little of consequence. After all, the Patriots absolutely annihilated the Indianapolis Colts 45-7 in the AFC Championship Game on January 18. It’s hard to conceive any edge Patriots quarterback Tom Brady allegedly gained from playing with deliberately underinflated footballs could be primarily responsible for that butt whipping.

     

     

    doing your part

    How to Deny My Denier Status?

    by | Jan 14, 2015
    k-cups

    These climate deniers are making me crazy! Every day, it’s some new story about some Republican lawmaker making up the most inane justifications for why he or she doesn’t believe the Earth’s climate is changing or why, if it is, then it’s not caused by humans. And these people are in charge!? Lord, help us!

    Just this week, something hit my Facebook news feed linking to a Mother Jones story proclaiming 72 Percent of Republican Senators Are Climate Deniers. Now, I’m no scientist… But, that’s just nuts! Someone please stop these people!?

     

     

    charlie hebdo

    Je Suis Charlie

    by | Jan 8, 2015

     

     

    a stain on values

    Outrage! Anger! Disgust! Horror! Shame! on our nation

    by | Dec 20, 2014
    The Torture Team: Yoo, Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld by DonkeyHotey

    Those are some of the emotions I feel after hearing of the way the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States has treated people in detention in the War on Terror. For this to be happening in a nation that says that all individuals have certain human rights, no matter what their station, the CIA actions are the highest of hypocrisy, which also goes against the basic principles that the American people hold high.

     

     

    bias in our justice system

    Perception is Reality Whether Real or Not

    by | Dec 9, 2014
    Perception is Reality Whether Real or Not

    Over two decades ago I first wrote an Op Ed piece on the value of a human life. The focus was that in this society we continue to value a human life on a sliding scale with white males at the top and black males at the bottom. Yes, our societal norms have changed over the centuries since the first Africans were brought to the shores of the Americas, but have our values, especially in terms of valuing human life, changed. If you look at what is taking place today, the answer is probably NO.

     

     

    you are the enemy

    What Ferguson Says About America

    by | Dec 8, 2014
    Michael Brown Sr. with Rev. Al Sharpton as Attorney Benjamin Crump leads a call and response of "Hands up, don't shoot," at the St. Louis Peace Fest.

    “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.” — John F. Kennedy, 1962

    One might think that, by turning Martin Luther King, Jr., into a cultural icon and electing a black president, America has bid farewell to its racist past. Recent events in Ferguson, MO, New York, and Phoenix, however, blow holes in that fantasy. Only by neutering King could America iconify him. Virtually anyone can resonate with the “I Have a Dream” King of 1963. But the “Beyond Vietnam” King of 1967 makes us squirm in profound discomfort.

     

     

    racial injustice

    Long Way To Go

    by | Dec 7, 2014
    Eric Garner Protest - Rockefeller Center by Tina Leggio (TinaLeggioPhotography.com) via flickr and used a Creative Commons license

    One of my black friends confided in me this week that he was really demoralized by all of the events surrounding the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner. He was so devastated that it affected his mood, work and outlook for the future. This is a man who had a successful career, is buoyant by nature, sociable, outgoing and a humorist. He continued: “Specifically, the events in Ferguson, Mo. and Staten Island, NY plus the widespread disrespect shown to my President has made me — a normally optimistic person–very pessimistic about the future of race relationships in the U.S.”

     

     

    pain in the ass

    Stupid Body Part Tricks

    by | Nov 8, 2014
    Stupid Body Part Tricks

    I’ve been getting older for awhile now.   The whole thing starts happening around the time I’m  six years old, though truthfully, it’s entirely possible that my aging could have started earlier.  (But since this is my account of the story, we’ll agree it started on my sixth birthday, the one where I was all dressed up in new Roy Rogers regalla as I blew out candles and wished for a birthday pony that never showed up.) For years, ‘my aging’ rolled along in more or less an orderly fashion and at fairly comfortable pace. I paid scant attention to it — except for birthdays, of course. Truth be told, even at an early age, I wasn’t entirely comfortable with the concept of relentlessly getting older.

     

     

    chronic v. infectious

    Ebola & Health Inequities

    by | Oct 3, 2014
    Ebola reaching American soil, is this a wake call to look at our approach to health care?

    This is a very short opinion piece because I don’t think it need must explanation. I want you to think the recent events in Dallas regarding the transmission of Ebola on to American soil. I see it as a big wake up call to all Americans, but specifically to affluent America. Why do I say that? For the vast majority of the 20th century our medical care system was based on a public health model…

     

     

    media fail

    Tipping Point: The People’s Climate March

    by | Sep 30, 2014
    People's Climate March New York

    “If the planet dies, all causes are lost causes.”Anonymous

    Humanity’s fate hangs on a tight race between two tipping points: a scientific one and a cognitive one. Scientists use the term “tipping point” to refer to a runaway feedback loop that, when triggered, abruptly and irreversibly changes the behavior of a system, such as the climate. For example, when permafrost melts, it releases methane, 50 times more potent as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. Thus: global warming, melting permafrost, more atmospheric methane, more global warming…

     

     

    problems, not targets

    Americans could help the world by combating peril and disasters

    by | Sep 29, 2014
    Americans could help the world by combating peril and disasters

    Six years ago, President Obama was all for bringing our troops home from far-off wars. Much of that has happened. Now new threats to world peace are prompting some war hawks to push for “sending in the troops,” no matter where the trouble is brewing.

    Good thing our military is controlled by a civilian Secretary of Defense. The military men will always advise on sending in the troops. They are trained to recommend no other way.

     

     

  • Worthy of Comment



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    When Everything Changed

    When Everything Changed

    Women’s liberation. Feminism. Bra-burning. Few of today’s young women, or older women for that matter, would align themselves with the first two, and the third is a myth. But all of these terms churn up collective images from one of the greatest social movements in history. Gail Collins’ riveting, epic new book, “When Everything Changed,” tells the story. Its subtitle, “The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present,” should have said an incredible journey. The transformation that occurred in a mere 50 years has irrevocably changed the day-to-day existence of women and men across the planet from a way  Read on →
    Another Glaring Example of Failing to 'Call It Out'

    Another Glaring Example of Failing to 'Call It Out'

    In today's Washington Post, there's an excellent op/ed about a threat to the integrity of our nation's judicial system. That is, the piece is excellent but for one glaring omission. Entitled "Keep politics out of the courthouse," it is written by retired Chief Justices of two of our states' Supreme Courts, Ruth McGregor of Arizona and Robert D. Orr of Indiana. McGregor and Orr give three examples of how altogether inappropriate kinds of political pressure have lately been brought to bear upon our "independent" judiciary. The first of these comes from Oklahoma, where "political efforts to bully and weaken Oklahoma’s courts" played  Read on →
    Occupy Atlanta VS Kasim Reed, the Black Misleadership Class and the One Percent

    Occupy Atlanta VS Kasim Reed, the Black Misleadership Class and the One Percent

    Why are police across the country arresting and dispersing occupation sites? And why is the Black Misleadership Class, and its black Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed threatened by the occupy movement? Why did Atlanta send copters, hundreds of police, and spend at least $800,000 to breakup Occupy Atlanta? Where will it assemble next? Can homeless Atlanta and Occupy Atlanta work together, and if they can, will Mayor Reed and his friends in the one percent like that even less? Back in Janaury 2010, I wrote that "the black political elite no longer believes its mission is to fight for peace and justice. The  Read on →