With Stetson Kennedy, Wayne Greenhaw before we appeared together during a Civil Rights Session at the the 2011 Amelia Island Book Festival. Tragically, both Stetson and Wayne died later that year. More »
Members of the 1960 Jacksonville Youth Council NAACP TODAY---with Marjorie Meeks Brown, Dr. Arnett E. Girardeau, Iona Godfrey King, Rometa Graham Porter, Isaac Carnes, Alton Yates. More »
With NAACP National Executive Secretary Roy Wilkins in 1960 when he spoke in Jacksonville at one of the NAACP Mass Meetings. More »
With Dr. Michael Eric Dyson-Speaker at the 2009 Jacksonville Branch NAACP Freedom Fund Dinner. More »
With Dr. Charles Ogletree, the Harvard Law School Jesse Climenko Professor of Law, and Founding and Executive Director of the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice...and the Speaker at the 2008 Jacksonville Branch NAACP Freedom Fund Dinner. Dr. Ogletree taught both Michelle Obama and President Obama at Harvard Law School. More »
Ruby Hurley and Ella Baker, two of 12 Civil Rights Icons immortalized in the 2009 USPS Stamp Issue-Civil Rights Pioneers. More »
Mrs. Ruby Hurley, Southeastern Regional Director NAACP and our 1960 NAACP Youth Council Surrogate Mother. Mrs. Hurley spent several months in Jacksonville (because of Ax Handle Saturday) directing her activities as NAACP director and working with us as we dealt with civil rights issues in Jacksonville. You can imagine my pride when she was selected and featured on a stamp as a Civil Rights Pioneer. More »
With Dr. and Mrs. James Lowen and Mr. and Mrs. Ferdinand (Lois) JuLuke at Kingsley Plantation. Dr. Loewen spoke during the Jacksonville Branch NAACP 50th Anniversary Commemoration of the 1960 Sit-ins and Ax Handle Saturday. More »
With Civil Rights Stalwart and former Florida State Senator Dr. Arnett Girardeau, the first and only Black Senator to also serve as Senate President Pro Tempore, Ben Jealous, and wife, Ann. More »
At the Lufrano Gallery on the Campus of the University of North Florida for an Exhibit of Images in my Book---with Granddaughter, Kita; Son, Rodney II; Wife, Ann; Family Friend, Cheryl Coffey; and Granddaughter, Jasmine. More »
Book Images Exhibit - It was never about a hot dog and a Coke!- at the Lufrano Gallery at the University of North Florida. More »
50th Anniversary Commemoration of the 1960 Sit-ins and Ax Handle Saturday with members of the 1960 Jacksonville Youth Council NAACP. From left...Issac Carnes, Marjorie Meeks Brown, Mary Chisholm Underwood, Iona Godfrey King, and Ann Albertie Hurst (yep my wife). In the rear of the Pulpit area at Bethel Baptist Institutional Church...from left...Ms. Adora Nweze, President of the Florida State Conference of Branches NAACP; Rev. Dr. Randolph Bracy; Isaiah Rumlin, President of the Jacksonville Branch; and Bethel Senior Co-Pastor, Bishop Rudolph McKissick Sr. More »
It was my honor to serve as Banquet Emcee at the 98th Convention of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) in Jacksonville, Florida October 5, 2013. Outstanding convention! More »
With the Incomparable Dr. Johnnetta Cole, Banquet Speaker at the 98th Convention of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) and American Beach Historian and Author Marsha D. Phelts. More »
Debo Adegbile, nominee for Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, Department of Justice
(From the article)…"Like a pack of slavering Baskerville hounds, the card-carrying members of "RRR" (acronym meaning varies—rabid Republican racists, religiously race-baiting right-wingers, reactionary racist Repubs, right-wing racist rhetoricians, or your choice) are on the scent of their new meme of "racialism" and their target is one of President Barack Obama's nominee's—Debo Adegbile.
Adegbile was nominated to head-up the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice.
Seems like there is a logic to selecting a lawyer to head up a civil rights division who has actual experience with (gasp) civil rights litigation. Adegbile has it.
Debo P. Adegbile is Senior Counsel to the United States Senate Judiciary Committee, a position he has held since July 2013. Previously, from 2001 to 2013, Mr. Adegbile held a number of roles at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc., including Special Counsel, Acting President and Director-Counsel, Associate Director-Counsel and Director of Litigation, Associate Director of Litigation, and Assistant Counsel.
The problem for RRR's is that Adegbile is black. Worse—from their perspective—he is black and a veteran of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund (who they see as anti-white), and from a birtherist nativist xenophobic perspective clearly not "Amurrican" enough. There's that surname of his—Adegbile, which is Nigerian, from his father. And he's the son of parents who, according to Richard Cohen, are probably causing a lot of gagging, since his mom is Irish."
My Words...Racists have a disease they must deal with everyday. It is called Racism.
Many Racists call themselves Christian yet their disease is characterized by lying, anger, wanton violence, destruction of governmental and private property, misuse of the English language, parading around in strange costumes while hiding their faces, using words they cannot define, use of dangerous weapons, burning tall non-symbolic pieces of wood, and contributing to the delinquency of minors. Their disease is quite demonic.
Racists cowardly direct their vicious attention at those who are different from them based on how they look and the color of their skin. Sometimes a blood test will shed much needed background information on their real problems. The only known cure for Racism is death.
Since most Racists profess to be Christians, they have never envisioned the Ultimate nightmare when they die. God and the Devil are both Black!
The Struggle Continues. RLHSR.
On the morning of November 22, 1963 his motorcade left Fort Worth …came back to Carswell Air Force Base where he and Jackie Kennedy spent a good 20-30 minutes. shaking hands (at the edge of the flight ine) with military personnel and dependents who were allowed on the base to see the President. Yes I shook the President's hand and somewhere in somebody's official photo archive there is a picture.
Air Force One left Carswell Air Force Base about 11:15 am headed to Love Field in Dallas Texas. A little over an hour after leaving Carswell and shaking our hands, President Kennedy was dead. This was 1963. The Civil Rights Bill had not passed (1964)…the Voting Rights Bill had not passed (1965)… and racism and segregation was in flower. There was not a lot of love lost for President Kennedy no matter what the media says today. He was considered a liberal president who helped get Dr. Martin Luther King out of jailed in 1960. Kennedy reached out to Dr. Martin Luther King when he was convicted of a probation violation after participating in a diner sit-in in Atlanta, Georgia. Kennedy also called Mrs. King to tell her he and his brother Robert, were doing all they could to get Dr. King out of jail. Many southerners felt that was the turning point which enabled Kennedy to beat Nixon in the 1960 Presidential election.
There were reports throughout the South where many rejoiced after the President was killed. There was one report where an elementary class in Mississippi applauded and cheered when their teacher told them. Even on a military base racial tensions were high. Texas was just like the deep South. There were fights on Carswell between Whites and Blacks and other hard core racial confrontations. Such as it was, it did not get out of hand but it was not pretty. Racism and racial conflicts came to the fore and simmered for a while on the base. America was showing during those days how much farther it needed to travel.
It was not this country's finest hour nor did some in this great country of ours show a lot of compassion for its assassinated leader.
Unfortunately, the more things change the more things remain the same.
In July 1938 policy disagreements and health problems caused Houston to relinquish the leadership of the NAACP legal committee to Thurgood Marshall. Summing up Houston’s contribution to the struggle against segregation and racism, Marshall later remarked, “We owe it all to Charlie.”
Houston died from a heart attack on April 22, 1950 at the age of 54. (Although he died before Brown v. Board of Education, he had already laid out the all important legal strategy.)
When I first met Thurgood Marshall and Constance Baker Motley (look her up) in 1957 (in Jacksonville), it was the first time I had heard the name of Charles Hamilton Houston. It would not be the last. Listening to a Civil Rights Giant like Thurgood Marshall talk about his mentor was heady stuff for me. After all, here I am talking to a Black man who in 1957 was bigger than life; and yet here he was talking civil rights to members of the Jacksonville Youth Council NAACP about the man who taught him Civil Rights legal strategies. I was barely a teen-ager at the time. But the obvious question in my mind was, You Mr. Marshall are a Giant…what manner of man was Charles Hamilton Houston? A great one I would ultimately find out. Not to wallow in the past, but I often re-visit those days and the legacy of Black History …and the History of the Civil Rights Movement…and understanding the Struggle. It is that important.
There is much misinformation and disinformation …and purposefully so…surrounding Nathan Bedford Forrest. As Jacksonville finally embarks on renaming Nathan Bedford Forrest High School and hopefully righting the horrific wrong perpetrated on this community by the Duval County School Board in 1959, let me set the record straight for those who are interested and for the Nathan Bedford Forrest defenders and apologists.
Slave Trader—Nathan Bedford Forrest, one of the most polarizing figures of the Civil War era, was born July 13, 1821 in Chapel Hill, Tennessee – a small town on the Duck River. When his father, a blacksmith, died when he was 16, Forrest moved to the Memphis Delta. Though quasi illiterate all his life, Forrest operated in Memphis, Tennessee, where he made a fortune. He was one of the richest slave dealers in the South. One of his ads read:
Five Hundred Negroes Wanted. – We will pay the highest cash price for all good Negroes offered. We invite all those having Negroes for sale, to call on us, at our Mart, opposite Hill's old stand, on Adams Street. We will have a good lot of Virginia Negroes on hand, for sale, in the fall. Negroes bought and sold on commission. HILL & FORREST.
His annual profits from slave trading alone-he also owned cotton plantations-were estimated at more than $50,000 (about $1 million in constant dollars.) He probably sold more than one thousand slaves a year.
The Fort Pillow Massacre— By late morning on April 12, 1864, Forrest rode up to the Confederate headquarters outside of Fort Pillow, an installation some 40 miles upriver from Memphis. The Southerners under his command had surrounded the fort, built originally as a Confederate outpost but occupied by Union soldiers — many of them Black. By mid-afternoon, his forces clearly in siege of the garrison, Forrest sent a request under a flag of truce for surrender. It was declined. So Forrest’s forces, superior in number, stormed the fort.
In keeping with Confederate policy at that time, Forrest—by then a major general—ordered his troops to “take no more Negro prisoners” when they assaulted and captured Ft. Pillow. A Congressional investigation committee verified the slaughter of more than 300 Black men, women, and children within the fort. After surrounding Fort Pillow, near Memphis, Forrest demanded the surrender of the garrison, which included 262 soldiers of the U.S. Colored Heavy Artillery. When the Union forces refused, Forrest’s men easily overran the fort. Then, according to several eyewitness accounts, the Confederates, enraged by the sight of Black men in Federal uniform, executed many of the colored troops after they had surrendered: an unambiguous war crime. Though accounts varied, the incident stands as one of the most gruesome of the Civil War era; “Remember Fort Pillow” became a rallying-cry for Black soldiers throughout the Union Army. Many Nathan Bedford Forrest apologists claim a massacre never happened….or…if it did happen Forrest had no involvement. In his 2001 book “An Unerring Fire: The Massacre at Fort Pillow,” Richard L. Fuchs, a New York lawyer, makes a differing judgment. To Fuchs, a “deliberate massacre” had taken place — and he laid the blame directly at Forrest’s feet. Fuchs concludes, “The affair at Fort Pillow was simply an orgy of death, a mass lynching to satisfy the basest of conduct – intentional murder – for the vilest of reasons – racism and personal enmity”.
Ku Klux Klan—In the summer of 1866, at the Maxwell House in Nashville, ex-Confederate Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest and six ex-Confederate officers the Ku Klux Klan. Drawing on their college Greek, they adopted the term for circle, "kuklos." They added the alliterative word "klan," and the "Ku Klux Klan" was born. Forrest became The First Grand Wizard, and other generals served as state grand dragons. Their nightly rides, in which members disguised themselves in masks and flowing robes, soon became a political successor to the prewar slave patrols in controlling newly freed Blacks. Particularly across the upper South, Klansmen sought to overturn the new Republican state governments, drive Black men out of politics, control Black labor, and restore Black subordination. Led by so-called Southern Aristocracy and elected officials, and drawing on a cross-section of white male society, the Klan's assaults and murders numbered in the thousands.
The latest Civil War Urban Legend is Nathan Bedford Forrest was a founder of the NAACP. Nathan Bedford Forrest died in 1877. The NAACP was founded in 1909. Do the Math!
For History Revisionists, Southern Heritage Hangers-on, and Confederate and Civil War Apologists, refute this.
The Struggle Continues. RLHSR.
From a press release (with some of my changes)…Many of America’s revered colleges and universities—from Harvard, Yale, and Princeton to Rutgers, Williams College, and UNC—were soaked in the sweat, the tears, and sometimes the blood of African Slaves. The earliest academies proclaimed their mission to Christianize the savages of North America, and played a key role in white conquest. Later, the slave economy and higher education grew up together, each nurturing the other.
Slavery funded colleges, built campuses, and paid the wages of professors. Enslaved Americans waited on faculty and students; academic leaders aggressively courted the support of slave owners and slave traders. Significantly, as Wilder shows, our leading universities, dependent on human bondage, became breeding grounds for the racist ideas that sustained them.
Do you read or hear anyone pushing back at the National Racist Political Strategy of the National Racist Republicant Tea Party Party? Do you not see Confederate Flags at all Tea Party Rallies where they are confronting the meeker (to them) Republicants? Do you read or hear anyone now really pushing back at the Racist Tea Party Darling…One Ted Cruz. He walks on air for many Racists. He is a card carrying racist from a racist state and does not have to consider a backlash. His constituencies like what they see. Bottom line…If it walks like a Racist…and Talks like a Racist…It is a Racist. And silence in these political cases denote complicity.
Let us not fool ourselves, and let us no longer act as if the Tea Party and the Republicant Party are different Parties with different strategies. They are not. They employ the same strategy and they are Racists ALL. To quote that infamous Alabamian, George Wallace…Segregation (Racism) Now! Segregation (Racism) Tomorrow! Segregation (Racism) Forever! But, you say, George Wallace was a Democrat. Simply a Republicant (Racist) in Democrat clothing!
(CLICK ON LINK)
Excellent Web site to answer all of your Affordable Health Care Questions!
All par for the course for the Rabid Republicants in Congress and their ILk in this country.
The Struggle Continues!!! RLHSR.
Republicants have fought this President every step of the way and have blocked him every way they could to provide affordable health for millions of uninsured Americans. The fact we have more than 30 million uninsureds in this country is bad enough; so now all of a sudden with the glitches in the web site, which Republicants would not fund as a part of the budget request (see below), they are now information technology experts.
Republicants take your food and then ask, “Why are you Hungry?” And they denied funding for the web site and then lied about the reasons for the glitches. The Lazy Media who doubles as Shills for Republicants then carries the water for them and even push the absurd Lie the web site is costing 634 million dollars.
Senator Rafael Ted Texas is the senator of thirty-second richest state in the United States of America, with a per capita income of $19,617. Senator Cruz health insurance costs $20,000. Texas has 4.88 million uninsured adults 19-64 according to Texas Medical Association making it THE state with the most uninsured in the country.
And This from Rep Joe Barton, also from Texas who said, "I apologize". Barton told BP CEO Tony Hayward, "I do not want to live in a country where any time a citizen or a corporation does something that is legitimately wrong is subject to some sort of political pressure that is — again, in my words, amounts to a shakedown. So I apologize." Yet he led the charge against Obamacare.
This is just a distraction. All of a sudden Republicants are concerned … yet Republicant Governors and Republicant Legislatures have turned down providing health care insurance for those who need it across the board.
This too will pass…and those same Republicants after November of 2014 can sit on the sidelines and groan and moan and whine when they are no longer in charge of the House of Representatives.
Republicants took $24 billion out of the US Economy when they shut down government. How soon they forget or want you to anyway.
The Struggle Continues. RLHSR.
Brain surgeon notwithstanding, Dr. Ben Carson is an idiot. It seems that White conservatives will never learn that by trotting people like Allen West, Herman Cain, or Dr. Ben Carson out before the public, they’re doing themselves a disservice in the Black community. Black people know and understand our own people. We warned America that Herman Cain had a flawed character. Then when it came out that he was a philandering pervert, conservatives were shocked, while the Black community walked away snickering, and asked, "What else is new?"
Black people understand that ANY Black person who aligns him or herself with the conservative cause has to be either an idiot or suffer from a severe character flaw. Sound crazy? Okay, well tell me this, how do you feel about Americans who align themselves with Al Qaeda? It's the exact same rationale.
Black people have centuries of experience in dealing with White conservatives. We know who is grinnin' in our face during the day, and then riding around under sheets at night. So Black people have long since recognized what even many White liberals are just beginning to see – that the modern Republican Party is the domestic enemy of the United States. The recent government shutdown clearly attests to that fact. Thus, if Al Qaeda represents a rattle snake in America's garden, the current GOP represents a python in the bedroom. After all, Al Qaeda can only blowup buildings, while the current Republican Party is dedicated to destroying the very foundation upon which this nation was founded.
By Gary Younge of the Guardian. It is spot on!
In the early 1980s veteran pollster Stan Greenberg, conducted a focus group in Macomb County, a Detroit suburb, of former Democrats who had switched allegiance to the Republican Ronald Reagan. After he read a statement by Robert Kennedy about racial inequality, one participant interjected: “No wonder they killed him.”
“That stopped me and led to a whole new analysis of Reagan Democrats,” wrote Greenberg in a recent report, Inside the GOP. “I realized that in trying to reach this group of people race is everything,” he told me.
While conducting a focus group with Republicans over the summer he had a similar revelation, although it came not from a sole outburst but almost throwaway comments, often left on cards after the session. As one man left his handout he half-joked: “It’s probably digital, so you can check it on the NSA files.” Another asked: “Now you’re going to guarantee that what we put down here, we won’t be getting a call from the IRS about an audit or anything like that?” Alongside this sense of being spied upon was relief that, in these Republican-only groups, they had found kindred spirits. “I’m not alone in the way I view things for the most part,” wrote one on a postcard. “Not by myself in thought process,” confided another.
Those seeking to understand what drove the Republican party to shut down the government this month in a strategically disastrous move that laid bare its deep internal divisions – and ultimately led to humiliating defeat – could do worse than start here. The report reveals a sense of ideological, demographic and cultural siege, on the American right, from which there is no obvious escape. Unable to comprehend or process last year’s election defeat, they feel the nation has become unmoored from its founding principles and is on a full-scale, unrelenting descent into chaos. Obama has been victorious in implementing socialism and the party they identify with has proved incapable of halting the decline, leaving them alienated not only from the country at large but one another. If it appears as though they are howling at the moon, it’s because they feel all earthly options have been exhausted.
Describing Ireland’s economic and cultural transformation in his book The Deportees, Roddy Doyle wrote: “I went to bed in one country and woke up in a different one.” Many Republicans have precisely the same feeling.
Central to this deep-seated sense of angst is race. In 2012, 92% of the Republican vote came from white people who, within 30 years, will no longer be in the majority. “They are acutely racially conscious,” says Greenberg. “They are very aware that they are ‘white’ in a country that is becoming increasingly ‘minority’.” Growing increasingly dependent on an ever-shrinking base, they see their electoral fortunes waning but are resistant to adapting their message to broaden their appeal beyond their narrow racial confines. Race is less the explicit target of their anxiety (issues such as affirmative action and civil rights no longer dominate) than the primary (if not exclusive) prism through which their political consciousness is being filtered. “Race,” writes Greenberg, “is central to their worldview.”
There are three main ways in which this has been a factor in the recent government shutdown and Republican schisms. First is gerrymandering. Since race is one of the best predictors of voting behaviour, House congressional seats have been manipulated largely on racial grounds. Politicians at state level carve constituencies into odd and unlikely shapes, shuffling around various racial groups to protect incumbents. Both parties do this when they have the chance but Republicans, who run more state houses, have had more chance and have undertaken the task with much zeal and guile. As a result, in 2012 the Democrats won more votes nationally for Congress but still got fewer seats, giving the Republicans who shut down the government a fragile mandate. It also means incumbents need not fear losing their seats, leaving them able to act out.
Second is the perceived beneficiaries of government spending. Republicans are more likely to regard intervention as being to support minorities rather than to support the poor. This goes not only for food stamps and welfare but also for Obamacare – which was the issue that initially sparked the shutdown.
“Obamacare is a racial flashpoint for many evangelical and Tea Party voters,” writes Greenberg. Their despair is largely rooted in the assumption that by championing programs that disproportionately help minorities, Obama is effectively buying votes and securing a growing tranche of the electorate who will for evermore be dependent on government. One participant, echoing the views of many, said: “Every minority group wants to say they have the right to something, and they don’t. It’s life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. It doesn’t say happiness. You get to be alive and you get to be free. The rest of it’s just a pursuit … you’re not guaranteed happiness. You have to work for it.”
Finally, there is Obama – the black son of an African immigrant and white mother – who stands as an emblem for all this unease, personifying, in their minds, not only their political impotence today but their demographic irrelevance tomorrow. The word they’re most likely to use to describe him is “liar”. But their hostility goes beyond his policies and pronouncements to a deeply rooted suspicion of his authenticity.
“[There] is a sense of him being foreign, non-Christian, Muslim – and they wonder what really are his motives for the changes he is advancing.” As he moves into his second term, there is now an elision in the Republican mind between what they think he is (an immigrant, a fraudster, a non-American) and what they think he does (assist immigrants and fraudsters in contravention of American ideals).
Their inability to craft a credible strategic response to these insecurities only serves to reinforce them. “You don’t like a particular policy or a particular president?” taunted Obama last week. “Go out there and win an election.” The trouble is Republicans can’t because their racially charged rhetoric alienates minorities, leaving them more electorally isolated, prompting defeat – which leaves them ever more divided. Meanwhile, their reckless obstruction in Congress, which nearly triggered a default, makes the nation’s descent into chaos more likely. Unable to come to terms with the country in which they live, they are complicit in creating the very future they most fear.
The Struggle Continues. RLHSR .