Monday, November 20, 2017

What If?

                                              

                                                From The Ramparts
                                               Junious Ricardo Stanton
                                                     What If?
           
Holiday: noun 1500's Old English- haligdaeg- holy day, consecrated day, religious anniversary, a day of exemption from labor and recreation
           
            The word holiday in English etymology means a "holy day" a day set aside for religious purposes or special consecration. For example in this country from September through the beginning of January we experience  approximately one national holiday a month but when we stop to think about it, what do we get out of them other than a day off or a long weekend? For  example the first Monday in September is set aside to celebrate and honor the hard fought benefits of organized labor. Yet today in the US, organized labor (unions) is in major decline. Unions are on the way out. They are under severe attack by the ruling class and are becoming obsolete due to disruptive technologies such as artificial intelligence and robotics.
            "Union membership has steadily declined over the past two generations. Today just 11.2 percent of employees belong to unions, fewer than when President Roosevelt signed the National Labor Relations Act in 1935. The private sector figures are even lower - just one in 15 private employees hold union cards. Unions only remain strong in the one sector of the economy that faces no competition: the government. Government unions do not have to organize new members to replace those lost in bankruptcy. The government does not go out of business." http://www.heritage.org/jobs-and-labor/commentary/why-union-membership-declining
            That being the case why celebrate Labor Day? What if we stopped celebrating Labor Day altogether?
            In October we have Columbus Day a day set aside to commemorate a mass murderer, enslaver, a man who instigated a global holocaust. We all know the horrible truth about Columbus and what he did, yet we still celebrate him, why? Is it because we cannot challenge the narrative or is it because we are too cowardly not to celebrate this killer's legacy even thought we were/are directly impacted by it? What if we stopped celebrating Columbus Day?
            In November we celebrate Veterans Day and Thanksgiving. On Veterans Day we pay homage to those who fought and died in America's imperialist wars. Do we know the harsh reality America has been at war two hundred and twenty-two years out of its two hundred thirty nine year existence?!  The truth of the matter is, the only war the US fought when it was actually directly threatened by a foreign power was the War of 1812! So what are/were the other wars about?  How about we stop celebrating war?
            Thanksgiving became a national holiday in 1939 (some say 1864)  to celebrate  European settlers giving thanks for their survival despite engaging in murderous and larcenous behavior towards the indigenous people who originally welcomed them to these shores and provided all the food for the original settler celebration in 1621. Originally national leaders called for a day of prayer, fasting, feasting and thanksgiving but today it has degenerated to a day of gluttony, sports consumption and shopping. What if we held a real day of Thanksgiving where we were genuinely grateful for the abundance nature provides, our families and blessings?
            In December we celebrate Christmas despite the fact Christmas is fraught with controversy because no one really knows when Yeshua Bar Joseph was born. Today Christmas (the Catholic Christ Mass)  has been reduced to weeks of commercialism, consumerism and materialism.
            We celebrate the New Years on December 31st to ring in the new year but it too has been reduced to rowdiness, drinking, gluttony and binge sports watching. New Year's starts the process all over again with MLK, Valentine's Day, Presidents Day, Easter, Memorial Day and 4th of July on into Labor Day etc. and we do this mindlessly every year.
            What if we adhered to the original meaning of holiday (holy day)? What if we as a whole society or just us Black people observed and consecrated a day or days to PEACE, LOVE and set aside time to think about our life purpose, why we incarnated to this plane in the first place? What if we decided to be kind and loving towards our fellow man and we actually were sober, clear minded and seriously celebrated and honored people who did something meaningful to improve and advance humanity in stead of war criminals, mass murderers and enslavers like Columbus and Washington?
            What if we held PEACE vigils, meditated and spent designated days or at least several hours in introspection, self-examination and reflection, thinking about ways to improve our lives and our relationships? What if we decided all life is sacred and treated all life as if it contained a DIVINE spark? What if we gave genuine thanks for the animals we killed and used for food and clothing? What if we acted as if every day was a holy day? What if we viewed ourselves as holy people, as sons and daughters of the MOST HIGH and acted accordingly? What would such a society look and feel like?


                                                -30-

Monday, November 13, 2017

1804 The Hidden History of Haiti

                                                 


                                                  From The Ramparts
                                                Junious Ricardo Stanton
                                       1804 The Hidden History of Haiti

            On November 1st the excellent documentary 1804 The Hidden History of Haiti went on sale on a direct to consumer basis after limited nation wide screenings to introduce the film.  1804 was produced and directed by Tariq Nasheed the producer of the popular and successful Hidden Colors series of films which reveal suppressed African history and the world wide influence of Africa and Africans in antiquity. The film series also examines the functions of melanin, explains racism, global European domination and offers insights and solutions to overcome the oppression and menticide African people are subjected to on a daily basis.
            1804 The Hidden History of Haiti is a comprehensive look at the history of the island originally called Ayiti (sacred high land) by its aboriginal Arawak/Taino inhabitants. The film documents the devastation and horrific conditions brought to the Caribbean by the murderous Europeans and reveals the origins of the courageous leaders of the liberation struggle that made Haiti the first free sovereign Black republic in the world to liberate itself from European colonial domination! The filmmakers present the whole history and struggle of Haiti from an African liberation point of view. It tells the cruel conditions, tortures and abuses the Europeans imposed on the indigenous peoples and the imported Africans who were brought to the island to provide the back breaking manual labor that made Hispaniola (the name Christopher Columbus gave the island) the richest "possession" of not only France but all the European colonies in the Western Hemisphere.
            African centered researchers, scholars and activists share the true history and mindsets of Makandal, Boukman Dutty, Toussaint Louverture and Jean Jacques Dessalines the major male leaders of the liberation struggle who took on not only the French but also the Spanish and English in their quest for freedom. Director Tariq Nasheed uses enactors, flattering camera shots of the scholars, island scenery, ecology and explains the power of African spirituality (Vodun) as the catalyses of the African victories that sent shock waves throughout the slave holding Western world when the Africans defeated the European imperialists' armies.
            The film is shot in high definition which enhances the storytelling and imagery. The visuals and optics provide an attractive look for the speakers, actors and the beautiful landscape that depict Haiti and its history in an entirely new light, one that counters centuries of Western bias and lies. Scholars and activists: Mildred D. Mitchell, Akala Bayyinah Bello, Ezili Danto, Dr Kaba Kamene, Professor James Smalls, Dr Leonard Jeffries, Professor Gerald Horne, Wyclef and Tariq Nasheed provide insights and historical information about Haiti and the revolution that bring home and glorify the enormous significance of the Haitian victory; not just for the people of Haiti but for Africans world wide. Their information coupled with the eye-catching visuals gives the film depth and an emotional energy we don't get in European productions because they are telling Ourstory.
            The strategies and tactics of the Haitians are explained throughout the documentary and the film provides insights into the thinking of the leaders that offsets the distortions about Haiti, the revolution and Haitian people we get from European historiography and the Eurocentric narrative about the revolution.
            The DVD, is available direct to consumer from the 1804Movie.com Website and Amazon. 1804 The Hidden History of Haiti is a must addition to your private media collection because it reveals long suppressed history and documents about what African people accomplished against overwhelming odds. It presents Haiti in a whole new light and destroys the myth of white superiority and invincibility. More importantly the film shares the means the Haitians employed to gain their sovereignty and independence and why the West maintains a vendetta against Haiti to this day! By the way these same tactics were used by the Maroons and the Quilombos of Palmares in Brazil to secure their freedom.
            You can order the film at http://www.1804movie.com or through Amazon.


                                                -30-

Monday, October 30, 2017

The FBI's Mythical Black Threats

       


                                           From the Ramparts
                                           Junious Ricardo Stanton
                                  The FBI's Mythical Black Threats

            "The FBI assesses it is very likely Black Identity Extremist (BIE) perceptions of police brutality against African Americans spurred an increase in premeditated, retaliatory lethal violence against law enforcement and will very likely serve as justification for such violence. The FBI assess it is very likely this increase began following the 9 August 2014 shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and the subsequent Grand Jury November 2014 declination to indict the police officers involved. The FBI assesses it is very likely incidents of alleged police abuse against African Americans since then have continued to feed the resurgence in ideologically motivated, violent criminal activity within the BIE movement. The FBI assesses it is very likely some BIEs are influenced by a mix of anti-authoritarian, Moorish sovereign citizen ideology, and BIE ideology. The FBI has high confidence in these assessments, based on a history of violent incidents attributed to individuals who acted on behalf of their ideological beliefs, documented in FBI investigations and other law enforcement and open source reporting." https://www.politico.com/f/?id=0000015f-11c2-d01e-a35f-f7c641380000

            A report obtained and released by Foreign Policy dot com http://foreignpolicy.com/2017/10/06/the-fbi-has-identified-a-new-domestic-terrorist-threat-and-its-black-identity-extremists/ reveals the FBI believes groups it calls Black Identity Extremists pose a dangerous threat to the tranquility, safety and stability of this nation. When I first heard it I thought to myself, who and what are Black Identity Extremists? Who are they and why does the FBI feel they are such a threat to this nation? My next thought was are the FBI, state and local "law enforcement" agencies planning to initiate a counterinsurgency assault against Black people like they've done so many times in the past, most notably during the 1960's and 70's with their infamous COINTELPRO campaign?
            Ironically the FBI report dated August of 2017 near the time Alt Right and White Nationalist groups converged on Charlottesville Virginia to support maintaining statues of Confederate war generals. The White Nationalists engaged in scuffles with counter demonstrators demanding the statues be taken down, resulting in one fatality and several injuries.  The riot and fights made the news but when President Trump subsequently failed to come out strongly in opposition to the White Nationalists' ideology and tactics this created even more controversy and reaction against Trump; thus keeping the story alive.
            The FBI report was marked law enforcement sensitive designed for law enforcement and counterterrorism officials on a need to know basis. Many on the Left pooh-pooh the report when it was exposed calling it racist, reactionary and non factual. The report didn't gain traction in the corporate media and for the most part Blacks viewed it as business as usual for the FBI an agency with a sordid reputation when it comes to dealing with African-Americans, political dissent and anti-establishment politics.
            I read parts of the document and I was taken aback by its lack of concrete evidence and its' conclusions. Parts of it were extremely vague and general. Early on it spoke of retaliations by Blacks because of "perceived" instances of police brutality, as if Black folks are crazy for thinking the police are off the chain when it comes to dealing with Black people. The exact wording is as follows: "The FBI assesses it is very likely Black Identity Extremist (BIE) perceptions of police brutality against African Americans spurred an increase in premeditated, retaliatory lethal violence against law enforcement and will very likely serve as justification for such violence. The FBI assess it is very likely this increase began following the 9 August 2014 shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and the subsequent Grand Jury November 2014 declination to indict the police officers involved. The FBI assesses it is very likely incidents of alleged police abuse against African Americans since then have continued to feed the resurgence in ideologically motivated, violent criminal activity within the BIE movement. The FBI assesses it is very likely some BIEs are influenced by a mix of anti-authoritarian, Moorish sovereign citizen ideology, and BIE ideology. The FBI has high confidence in these assessments, based on a history of violent incidents attributed to individuals who acted on behalf of their ideological" https://www.politico.com/f/?id=0000015f-11c2-d01e-a35f-f7c641380000
            But when you read on specifically under the section Suspects’ Grievances Very Likely Lead to Violent Targeting of Law Enforcement the report provides no concrete link between the attacks against police officers around the country and any organized collusion on the part of Black individuals or groups, not one! The document even defines the Moorish Sovereign movement as a "loose network". It says " Moorish sovereign citizens are a loose network of mostly African Americans who believe they are sovereign entities who do not recognize the authority of the US Government. Moorish sovereign citizen ideology derives from the Moorish Science Temple of America, a non-violent religious and cultural movement founded in 1913 by Nobel Drew Ali, who taught his followers they were not 'negroes' but Moors, people of North African Berber and Arab descent. Some Moorish adherents adopt sovereign citizen strategies to assert diplomatic immunity by claiming membership in fictitious Native American tribes, claiming descent from settlers who arrived in North America during the pre-Columbian era, or identifying as foreign nationals or ambassadors."  (U//FOUO) https://www.politico.com/f/?id=0000015f-11c2-d01e-a35f-f7c641380000
            Much of the report attempts to connect recent events like the murder of Michael Brown in Ferguson Missouri and its aftermath with past radical, nationalist or nonconformist movements but without tying any of the groups together as operationally capable of organized mass violence or posing a real threat (outside of the FBI's warped mind) to the country. The FBI document repeatedly talks about violence against police when the realty is despite police abuses and indignities faced by blacks on a daily basis from police, structured physical retaliation and armed violence against police has been extremely limited, almost non-existent.
             Despite this fact, the report engages in unsubstantiated fear mongering claiming Black Identity Extremists (BIE) pose a genuine threat. " The FBI assesses it is very likely that BIEs’ perceptions of unjust treatment of African Americans and the perceived unchallenged illegitimate actions of law enforcement will inspire premeditated attacks against law enforcement over the next year. This may also lead to an increase in BIE group memberships, collaboration among BIE groups, or the appearance of additional violent lone offenders motivated by BIE rhetoric. The FBI further assesses it is very likely additional controversial police shootings of African Americans and the associated legal proceedings will continue to serve as drivers for violence against law enforcement. The FBI assesses it is likely police officers of minority groups are also targeted by BIEs because they are also representative of a perceived oppressive law enforcement system. (U//FOUO) Possible indicators for BIEs posing a violent threat to law enforcement include advocating for violence against law enforcement, violent anti-white rhetoric, attempts to acquire illegal weapons or explosives, and affiliations with others in both the BSE and sovereign citizen extremist movements." ibid.
            Read the report for yourself at https://www.politico.com/f/?id=0000015f-11c2-d01e-a35f-f7c641380000 and come to your own conclusions. Keep in mind the US government lies and uses lies to invade sovereign nations that pose no threat to the US and the FBI has a long history of stifling dissent, freedom of speech and righteous social movements such as the Civil Rights movement, organized labor, Native American, LaRaza and the Black Power movements. Is this bogus report a precursor to a new, ramped up COINTELPRO campaign?

                                                            -30-

            

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Cognitive Dissonance



                                                    From The Ramparts
                                                   Junious Ricardo Stanton
                                                  Cognitive Dissonance

            "Cognitive dissonance: an uncomfortable psychological state in which the individual experiences two incompatible beliefs or cognitions. Cognitive dissonance theory holds that the individual is motivated by the attendant discomfort to act in such a manner s to reduce dissonance." Dictionary of Psychology Second Revised Edition

            Since our enslavement in this country, Africans in America have been subjected to an intense multi-generational campaign of brainwashing and programming designed to make us loath ourselves and view Europeans has gods or at least invulnerable natural masters. Every institution created and maintained by the Europeans is designed to promote white supremacy and concomitant Black subjugation. This programming was initiated during the so called breaking period when our ancestors were kidnapped from Africa, brought to the Caribbean and North America, subjected to horrific torture, abuses, rape, degradation, brutality and brainwashing until they died, escaped or were granted freedom.
            "The first step advised those who wrote discourses on the management of slaves, was to establish and maintain strict discipline... The second step was to implant in the bondsman themselves a consciousness of personal inferiority. The had 'to know and keep their places' to "feel the difference between master and slave', to understand that bondage was their natural status. They had to feel that African ancestry tainted them, that their color was a badge of degradation. In the country they were to show respect for even their master's non-slaveholding neighbors; in the town they were to give way on the streets to the most wretched white man." The Peculiar Institution Slavery in the Ante-Bellum South Kenneth M.  Stampp page 144-45
            With the end of formal slavery, Blacks were subjected to quasi slavery under an insidious system of  stifling and oppressive color caste, sharecropping, tenant farming and convict leasing. Inherent in this system were attempts to keep Blacks ignorant and brainwashed to believe we were inherently inferior and woefully inadequate.
            The "Civil Rights" movement valiantly strove to break down state sanctioned apartheid in the US, court cases were filed and won,  laws were written  and passed with the intent to make society more open and accessible. Nevertheless the consciousness that created and maintained this racist system in the first place still exists and is deeply rooted in the American psyche. 
            Anti-Black programming still exists and we still find ourselves holding contrasting perceptions and ideas about o urselves. On one hand we are told by whites, slavery wasn't so bad, get over it, segregation has been eliminated and we live in a "post racial" society; yet looking at housing and school attendance patterns, incarceration rates, wealth and income, it is clear racial inequality remains high and upward socio-economic mobility remains elusive for many Blacks. But many Blacks think they have arrived and  racial disparity doesn't impact them.
            " Social mobility is the ability of an individual or family to improve (or lower) their economic status. The two main types of social mobility are intergenerational (i.e., a person is better off than their parents or grandparents) or intragenerational (i.e., income changes within a person or group’s lifetime). While there is no truly adequate gauge to measure such opportunities, we can get a fair estimate based on measurements of social mobility. And by that measure, African Americans are fairing poorly. The Brookings Institute recently highlighted three disturbing facts about the social mobility of black Americans. "We have written previously on the lower rates of upward mobility and the higher rates of downward mobility for black Americans; but like most researchers, our focus has been on data from the last few decades. William Collins and Marianne Wanamaker have been more ambitious, reaching back to the 19th century. With a dataset comprised of Census microfilm, WWII draft records, and Ancestry.com records, they are able to study linked pairs of fathers and their sons all the way back to 1880, and up to the end of the 20th century. Their findings, published in an NBER working paper,Up from slavery? African American intergenerational economic mobility since 1880, are striking. Imputing income using individual characteristics, including occupation, region, and gender, Collins and Wanamaker find that black sons have historically been significantly less likely than their white peers from similar economic backgrounds to ascend the income ladder. Black sons were less likely than their white peers to enjoy higher-earning jobs than the ones their fathers had, so their incomes were lower. This mobility gap can be seen across the entire period. Even for the latest cohort (with earnings observed in 1990), they find a yawning gap in upward economic mobility between black and white sons from similar backgrounds—somewhat smaller than existed in 1900 or 1930, but still huge." https://www.brookings.edu/research/the-century-gap-low-economic-mobility-for-black-men-150-years-after-the-civil-war/
            So called "middle class" Blacks are oblivious to the fact their white peers earn more and own much more accumulated wealth than they do. On one hand they believe they are doing really well because they have jobs and incomes their parents did not have access to a generation ago, but the fact is we are not on par economically with whites.
             "The racial wealth gap is much larger than the wage or income gap by race. Average wealth for white families is seven times higher than average wealth for black families. Worse still, median white wealth (wealth for the family in the exact middle of the overall distribution—wealthier than half of all families and less-wealthy than half) is twelve times higher than median black wealth. More than one in four black households have zero or negative net worth, compared to less than one in ten white families without wealth, which explains the large differences in the racial wealth gap at the mean and median.  These raw differences persist, and are growing, even after taking age, household structure, education level, income, or occupation into account.
http://www.epi.org/blog/the-racial-wealth-gap-how-african-americans-have-been-shortchanged-out-of-the-materials-to-build-wealth/
            The cognitive dissonance comes when bougie Negroes who look down on their less affluent brethren think they are equal to white folks. This is why we still see the conspicuous consumption and delusional behaviors sociologist E Franklin Frazier wrote about in his book Black Bourgeoisie in1957, fifty years ago despite the "civil rights" gains of the 50's and 60's. Speaking about the bougie Negroes of his era Frazier wrote, "They seek an escape in delusions involving wealth. This is facilitated by the fact they have had little experience with the real meaning of wealth and that they lack a tradition of saving and accumulation. Wealth to them means spending money without any reference to it source... Moreover the attraction of the delusion of wealth is enhanced by the belief that wealth will gain them acceptance in American life." page 230
            The cognitive dissonance and disconnect is the fact they are not rich in the true sense of owning wealth generating assets as opposed to just wages. Obviously the wealth wipe out of the 2008 recession has not awakened us to the realities of American living and the wealth divide.

                                                            -30-




Monday, October 16, 2017

Dismal Wealth Projections


                                     

                                     From the Ramparts
                                     Junious Ricardo Stanton
                                 Dismal Wealth Projections

            "Since 1983, the respective wealth of Black and Latino families has plunged from $6,800 and $4,000 in 1983 to $1,700 and $2,000 in 2013. These figures exclude durable goods like automobiles and electronics, as these items depreciate quickly in value and do not hold the same liquidity, stability or appreciation of other financial assets like a savings account, a treasury bond or a home. By comparison, since 1983 the median wealth of White households has risen by nearly $15,000, reaching $116,800 in 2013. Put differently, in just over a generation, median Black and Latino households saw their already-low net worth decrease by 75% and 50%, respectively, while median White households saw their net worth increase by 14%. The result is a wealth divide between Black and Latino households and White households that now stands at over $115,000, a nearly 20% increase." The Road To Zero Wealth How The Racial Wealth Divide Is Hollowing Out America's Middle Class https://prosperitynow.org/files/PDFs/road_to_zero_wealth.pdf

            Several weeks ago I was surfing the Web and stopped at a site I frequently visit https://www.blackagendareport.com and I saw an alarming banner about the declining wealth of African-Americans and Latinos in America. It predicted Black wealth would be zero by 2050.  I filed it away in my mind and then last week I searched the Web to find the actual study. I found the site of the people who did the study but I also saw a report from Forbes that elaborated on their report https://www.forbes.com/sites/eriksherman/2017/09/11/median-wealth-of-black-and-latino-families-could-hit-zero-before-the-centurys-end/#75e9ec3b50f6. Then I went to the original study and read it.
            It is nothing we don't already know, it just extrapolates our current economic decline to 2050 where they project wealth for African-Americans will be zero; that's right zero, zip, nothing, nada!
            People of color took a major hit during the 2008 recession losing billions of dollars of wealth in real estate, savings and other assets. The Wall Street engineered collapse was especially devastating for Blacks and Latinos. "The wealth of white households was 13 times the median wealth of black households in 2013, compared with eight times the wealth in 2010, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of data from the Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances. Likewise, the wealth of white households is now more than 10 times the wealth of Hispanic households, compared with nine times the wealth in 2010. The current gap between blacks and whites has reached its highest point since 1989, when whites had 17 times the wealth of black households. The current white-to-Hispanic wealth ratio has reached a level not seen since 2001. (Asians and other racial groups are not separately identified in the public-use versions of the Fed’s survey.)... A number of factors seem responsible for the widening of the wealth gaps during the economic recovery. As the Federal Reserve notes, the median income of minority households (blacks, Hispanics and other non-whites combined) fell 9% from its 2010 to 2013 surveys, compared with a decrease of 1% for non-Hispanic white households. Thus, minority households may not have replenished their savings as much as white households or they may have had to draw down their savings even more during the recovery." Wealth Inequality has widened along racial and ethnic lines since the end of the great recession. http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/12/12/racial-wealth-gaps-great-recession/
            What makes this data more disheartening is the fact that under a "Black" president Barack Obama, absolutely nothing was done to those who created the financial collapse! Not one Wall Street or Big Bank executive was indicted, arrested or prosecuted for what they did to destroy millions of lives! In fact Bu$h, Obama and now Trump have made the banksters sacrosanct and untouchable, they all placed key Wall Street insiders in their cabinets, pursued and are pursuing policies that will exacerbate the income gap. Yet we say nothing and continue to go for the flim-flam.
            A New York Times report dated October 11, 2017 said this about an IMF report on Trump's tax cuts for the wealthy, "Over the past three decades, inequality within countries — including in the United States, China and India — has risen primarily because of the skyrocketing growth of incomes at the top. Some of this is a consequence of how economies are evolving, said Branko Milanovic, an economist at the City University of New York. New technologies are increasing the returns for the most educated, even as robots replace lower-earning workers. Globalization has allowed businesses to cast around the world for cheaper labor, while the decline of unions has left workers with less bargaining power. But the trend, at least in part, is also because of governments that have redistributed less wealth to poorer people through taxes and spending, the monetary fund suggested." https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/11/us/politics/imf-tax-cuts.html
            White people know what is happening, "In other words, the American-Dream idea that life should get easier and more prosperous as the natural course of progress is still embedded in our collective memory, even though the collective reality has changed: for the bottom 95%, life is typically getting harder and less prosperous as the cost of living rises, wages are stagnant and the demands on workers increase. Meanwhile, the asset bubbles inflated by central banks have enriched the top 10% of households, which own over 75% of all assets and take home over 50% of all household income." The fading Scent of The American Dream  http://www.blacklistednews.com/The_Fading_Scent_of_the_American_Dream/61288/0/38/38/Y/M.html
            Unless we wake up and begin to grapple with the these trends and come together collectively as a people to confront, address and reverse them we will be in worse shape than our ancestors were when they came out of formal enslavement and the Jim Crow era.

                                                            -30-



            

Monday, October 02, 2017

Keep Your Head Up, Keep The Faith

                                             

                                              From The Ramparts
                                              Junious Ricardo Stanton
                                      Keep Your Head Up, Keep The Faith

            Don't be dismayed or bamboozled about the latest news or the newest controversial tweet or statement from Donald Trump, focus on remaining sane amidst the feverish daily assaults on our psyches by the mind control apparatus owned and operated by the 1%'s corporations. Don't fall for the narrative promoting "unity" under the auspices of disguised global white supremacy. Don't be afraid because of the storms, fires, earthquakes, shootings or man's cruelty to man, the end is not near, this too shall pass.
            Don't despair about the seeming craziness happening all around us this is part of a deliberate attempt to drive us mad by the ruling class. "This current two party system seems to breed psychopaths in abundance. Psychopaths habitually offer excuses for their reckless and often outrageous actions, placing blame on others instead of themselves. In addition to just being psychopaths, they often have narcissistic personality disorder. They are known for 'gaslighting' their victims, which is a type of brainwashing which can involve convincing a mentally healthy person that they are going insane or that their understanding of reality is false. They rarely learn from their mistakes or benefit from negative feedback, and they have difficulty inhibiting their impulses. I would say that’s 85% of the American population, indeed!" Do Psychopaths Rule The US? http://themeritocracyparty.net/2016/11/24/psychopaths-america/ (my underline emphasis).
            Begin to take control over your consciousness and actions, be mindful and deliberate about what you read, think about, buy and engage in. Minimize your media consumption or begin to watch listen to or read inspirational materials, alternative media that exposes the mendacity and deceit of the corporate media and that offer healthy models and methods of human interaction instead of the competitiveness, conflict and disrespect of the fake "reality shows". It is all fake contrived and illusionary designed to give us a counterfeit sense or reality, manipulate our behavior and mold our way of being. Don't fall for their okey-doke. Mainstream news focuses on the most violent most decadent and unusual events many of which are staged by PR firms, governments and corporations for their own agenda.
            Learn what the ruling class is doing to us and then live your life in such a way as to minimize their goals and agenda. "The mass media, in one form or another, tend to be a focal point for a significant portion of most people’s day. As independent citizens we consciously elect to purchase cable, Internet, and newspaper (print or online) subscriptions so that we can engage in whichever way we choose with the services the media provide. As a result, the mass media wield a considerable amount of power and influence on us as a society in terms of our decision-making, and our spending. They assist, though some may argue they direct, us in making meaning of signs and events, and determining our political affiliations amongst a host of other decisions. A study of media, politics, economics, corporations, and what their roles are in creating a dense concentration of ownership, which this study does to varying degrees, is ultimately rooted in cultural studies. The work of Stuart Hall, Roland Barthes, Michel Foucault, Karl Marx, and the Frankfurt School theorists play a Collusion(in(Oligopolistic(U.S.(Media 10 significant role in analyzing the issue of media ownership because of the power and class relationships involved, as well as the media’s power to create meaning and influence society."  THE PROPAGANDA MODEL: CORPORATE AND POLITICAL COLLUSION IN THE CREATION OF AN OLIGOPOLISTIC MAINSTREAM U.S. MEDIA Master's Thesis by Frank McCloy December 2012 http://web02.gonzaga.edu/comltheses/proquestftp/McCloy_gonzaga_0736M_10210.pdf
            Start viewing the media television, cable, streaming, newspapers, magazines and the Internet with suspicion, be consciously skeptical about their content, be discerning and make up your own mind about what is going on and do not blindly follow anyone!

                                   
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            If you want to celebrate Black Beauty, positive Black Culture, African inspired fashion and natural hair care, holistic health and be exposed to life altering information in an energy vortex honoring us as a people, make plans to attend the Twenty-Third annual International Locks Conference this weekend October 7 and 8 from twelve Noon to nine PM at the Universal Audenreid Charter High School located at 3301 Tasker Street in Philadelphia.  It only costs $10 to enter, once you enter you will immerse yourself in a sea of positive energy, workshops, natural hair care and beauty products created by people of African descent, avail yourself of workshops, seminars and lectures about natural health, economics, self-determination, educational strategies, and a host of other topics.
            There is ample parking in school parking lot,  the surrounding neighborhood, public transportation runs and stops in front of the school and there are hotels in close proximity. For more information call  (215) 438-8189, 1- 888 305-3186 or visit www.Locksconference.com or E-mail InternationalLocksConference@gmail.com.

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Monday, September 25, 2017

Statue of Octavius Valentine Catto Unveiled

  

    From The Ramparts
       Junious Ricardo Stanton                                                                                        Octavius Valentine Catto Statue Unveiled
                       
            Most Philadelphians are completely unaware of the significance of Octavius Valentine Catto in the history of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and the nation. Catto like so many people of African descent in the US was deliberately excluded from the history books and historiography of this city, state and nation.
             Octavius Valentine Catto was born in Charleston South Carolina on February 22, 1839 to a free born Black mother Sarah Isabella Cain and William Catto an enslaved Black man who was a millwright by training. William Catto purchased his own freedom and due to his devotion as a Sunday School teacher was recruited to become one of the few Black ordained and licensed Presbyterian Ministers. He was originally groomed to be a missionary to Liberia, the US "colony" established in Africa by the American Colonization Society in 1821. (Do some research on the American Colonization Society, you will be surprised by what you find, who some of their most prominent members were  and their plans goals for free people of African descent in the US.)
            The elder Catto was sent to Baltimore in preparation for departure to Liberia but the discovery of a letter he wrote caused the Presbyterian leadership to rethink the motives and loyalty of Catto. He was forced to flee and take his family to Philadelphia were he reacquainted with several men he knew in Charleston. Catto became an itinerant preacher alternating between the Presbyterian and the AME Church serving as pastor for several churches in the Northeast US.
             Reverend Catto sent his son Octavius to the best schools available that would admit blacks. Young Catto excelled in school and eventually made a name for himself as an honor student, orator, intellectual, educator, baseball player and activist.
            During the US War Between the States, Catto advocated for Blacks being allowed to enlist. He and several of his friends travelled to Harrisburg determined to enlist in the Union Army but they were turned down after being encouraged to petition for enlistment by several white Philadelphians.
            Undaunted Octavius worked to support the Union effort by raising over eleven regiments of "Colored Troops" to fight. It was Blacks like Catto, Frederick Douglas, Henry Highland Garnett and Martin R. Delany who used the war as an opportunity to press for freedom, equality and later enfranchisement.
            In addition to raising troops Octavius took on additional challenges to the existing socio-political order. Octavius became the first president of the  Institute For Colored Youth (the forerunner of Cheyney University) alumni association. He was a teacher and principal there.  ICY graduates sent more of its graduates to teach the enslaved and newly freed Blacks during and after the war than any other organization or institution. Catto and his Black friends actually wrote and lobbied for passage of the legislation that eventually desegregated the street car lines in Pennsylvania.
            Catto was an active member of the historic St Thomas African Episcopal Church founded by Absalom Jones in 1792 in Philadelphia the first African-American Episcopal church in the US. Like Catto many prominent Black Philadelphians were members of St Thomas which from its beginnings was a hub of social uplift, community activism and an ardent supporter of the Underground Railroad during slavery.
            Catto also pressed for the right to vote. Black males were stripped of the right to vote in Pennsylvania in 1848 and regaining the ballot was one of the goals Catto and his socially conscious agitator/activist colleagues sought to achieve.
            During a heated mayoral contest in 1871 Catto was murdered in cold blood in broad daylight by Frank Kelly one of  many Irish ruffians and thugs who bedeviled and assaulted Blacks in Philadelphia. Assaults and mob riots against Blacks had been going on for decades. Kelly was apprehended but somehow escaped and fled the city. He was captured five years later, brought to trial in Philadelphia but acquitted of Catto's murder!
            Most of Catto's exploits and accomplishments have been deliberately left out of history books. But now this travesty is being rectified. Recently there have been scholarly articles and books written about Catto and now a statue in his honor has been commissioned, sculpted, erected, unveiled and placed on the Southwest apron of  Philadelphia's City Hall. This statue will be the first statue ever erected of an African American on municipal property!
            On Sunday September 24th the African Episcopal Church of St Thomas held a special service honoring Octavius V. Catto, part of their two hundred twenty-fifth anniversary. One of the special guest speakers was Mayor James Kenney. The celebration at St Thomas marked the beginning of several days of activity to promote the unveiling of Catto's statue. The Mayor explained how and why he because fascinated about Octavius Catto and why he initiated the drive to recognize him with a permanent statue when Kenney was a councilman. It's been a long time coming, it took almost fifteen years to raise the funds and secure a sculptor to complete the project.  Octavius Valentine Catto is finally getting his just due.


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