Wednesday, April 25, 2007

So what have the Presidential candidates said? - 4.25.2007.2

I noticed something recently while writing the previous post. We all know that the race of the Presidency in 2008 has already begun. We have heard candidates speak on how great they are, thus being deserving of our votes. Respective of their political parties they have all claimed to be exemplifying the core values that voters want. But they haven’t told us anything really.

Yes, as the previous post proves there are some subjects that the potential candidates cannot avoid, but beyond that one subject what have they really said? If you have taken a look at my various questions posed to several of the main Presidential candidates, I have asked question on a spectrum of subjects. Taking out specific questions concerning health, age, and religion they all have been asked essentially the same thoughts. These thoughts have not been addressed by any of the candidates (nor have any of them been bold enough to respond).

In terms of healthcare, what has been said? Who is for national healthcare, and how do they expect to pay for it? How do they plan to keep taxes affordable? Who will help small business creation or growth? What initiatives will they champion for better race relations in the nation, or how about providing better educations to our children?

Can you honestly say that the WHOLE nation has been told these thoughts? Or have there been a lot of selective comments targeted to specific areas and groups that may contradict comments made to other areas and groups? Has anything said to raise money been specific or has it just been superficially all encompassing and popular enough to get free advertising?

Before you send out $1 to any candidate, check out the questions I have sent and have not been responded to. Ask yourself if you know the answers to the questions I posed, and if the nation knows that answer as well. I mean a detailed answer, not a cursory redirection of the answer. Ask them why they won’t answer, or respond, to the questions I have sent out since December 2006. Ask why they believe that questions from individuals, especially those that interact with tens of thousands of voting citizens, are unimportant while they ask for your money. Even asking while contacting you via the same medium that you and I are using now.

These are important questions. You should know the answers. Because once they are running, or are elected to office, it’s too late to say ‘this isn’t the guy I wanted’ or ‘I didn’t know you were for that’.

By the way, in polls on my various sites, Senator Obama is leading with 31% of votes, and Senators Clinton and McCain are tied for second with 21%. This includes the votes of visitors 18-65+. Just so you know.

This is what I think, what do you think?

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Comment by Rudy Giuliani - 4.25.2007.1

The Presidential candidates for the Democratic Party are in a rage. I know no surprise. What might be the reason this time? Comments from a Republican Presidential candidate. To be specific Mr. Rudy Giuliani. The comment that has caused this rage is reported as follows, “if a Democrat is elected, ‘it sounds to me like we're going on defense. We're going to wave the white flag there.’ But, he said, if a Republican wins, ‘we will remain on offense’ trying to anticipate what the terrorists are going to do and ‘trying to stop them before they do it."

So far all the Democratic hopefuls have defended themselves and claimed that this is a false comment, that it is an attempt to inspire fear and capitalize on a tragedy. I find that interesting since I cannot see how it is wrong. Every Republican candidate has said the same thing as Mr. Giuliani to some degree. Many Democratic lawmakers have also said this. So I must ask, how is fighting a war in a manner similar to a wrestling or boxing match a winning strategy? How is fighting on an exact and unyielding timetable, that does not consider the ramifications from the aftermath of suddenly abandoning a fight (or call it troop withdrawal if that feels better), increase the safety of Americans at home? I have yet to hear an answer on how that will happen. I have yet to hear how retreating (defined as: an act or process of withdrawing especially from what is difficult, dangerous, or disagreeable) makes us safer as a nation. If a Democrat can answer that direct question I may change my opinion, but to date not one has.

To be fair, no Republican has an answer on how long troops will be needed in Iraq, or how much money will be required to stabilize that nation. Not a single guess, though I believe it will take 5-10 years if the current pace is maintained. I can’t even guess at the cost, maybe 3x what has been spent to date. It’s not cheap, but then again “freedom is not free.”

I have to say that I’m not surprised. The current name-calling was apparent since before the mid-term elections. Some may recall when I mentioned, “What exactly is the Democratic platform on Iraq. No longer can the statement “we need a change” be the answer. The fact is we need a detailed description of what that change is. And it will be the Democratic Party that must be held accountable for what they define as needed change.”

To date we have been given an answer, though it is hardly detailed. The answer is leave Iraq as quickly as possible. But Democrats will not accept accountability for this decision. Rather than defunding the war which would pass, if it were the voice of the people to end the war without winning as they say it is, they are delaying providing fund. They are pushing forward bills that are known to be vetoed by the Commander-and-Chief and blaming the President for delays. This is while stating on national news (which has been shown world-wide to friends and enemies of this nation alike) “I believe myself that the secretary of state, secretary of defense and — you have to make your own decisions as to what the president knows — (know) this war is lost and the surge is not accomplishing anything as indicated by the extreme violence in Iraq yesterday.” While in any war there are days of large losses, it does not mean that the war is lost. There are numerous examples of this in every war including both theatres of WWI and WWII.

But if Majority leader Senator Reid is correct, how do we stop Al Quida and other groups or nations that oppose the American way of life from gathering strength and attacking our nation again? While winning the war may not be popular it does hold the foresight that may protect the nation from some major attacks. What protects the nation if we run away? Where is the foresight that will keep Americans safe in their homes and jobs? It’s not enough to make a half-step; we must know what the next part to their plan is. Only then can we, the citizens, then make a choice on what is the direction the nation should take. That is non-partisan, and in the best interest of the nation. Anything less is just politicking and will cost lives, I believe.

It’s not a Republican view to continue to fight, nor Democratic to retreat. They are views to secure the ability of America to maintain its security. But the former looks to the future, the latter just the present. If we chose a President that can only see the trees and not the forest then I fear what may happen as our children become young adults and inherit our unfinished gaffes.

This is what I think, what do you think?

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Monday, April 23, 2007

Responding to a reader comment Conclusion - 4.23.2007.3

Concluding Response to comments on Immigration and student aid for college...

Given that there is no identical nation to America, the similarities to other nations cultures is hit and miss in a buckshot pattern. 1 million immigrants of any nation would have varying degrees of integration difficulty. Canada is no better or worse than any other country.

I also feel a subtle confusion has occurred. The assumption is that your comments are comparing similar groups of immigrants. This is not the case. When you mention 15 million Hispanics you mention they are poor and from the 3rd world. You forgot to mention that they are also illegally here. To my knowledge most illegal aliens are poor and from lesser countries. That is why they come to America and other nations. To improve their lives. Immigrants that are rich, and/or from non-3rd world nations tend to be less likely to immigrate illegally. They have a lesser need, and time is not a factor that is detrimental to them. In addition the more poor the individual, and the worse the conditions of their native country the less likely they are to have higher educations. That does not mean they are stupid, just less educated. Doctors of any nation have less difficulty immigrating than do bricklayers, in any nation.

To be fair 750,000 poor Canadians that speak French, with sub-high school educations (by American standards) and enter the nation illegally would be a more accurate comparison. Given that comparison do you feel they would integrate into society easily even though they come from a 1st or 2nd world country?

Also do you feel that if 15 million English speaking, middle or higher income (American standard), white-collar, German or Italian (as an example) illegal immigrants were in the nation would that raise the ire and national cries for immigration reform? Does it change if they are now Hispanic? Does it change if they are less educated or don’t speak English or any of the other factors? What combination makes illegal immigrants a national issue? How much of a factor is the fact that many illegal aliens are identifyable due to language and color of skin?

Thus I do not feel that I have made an invalid cry of racism. In fact I mentioned it as a factor, which I have not noted you disputing. I did not state that it was the only reason, which you imply. In comparing apples to apples my opinion does not change. I do not want any illegal alien to receive any benefit derived from citizen taxes. I do think that Canada has proven to be a greater danger to national security than Mexico and continues to be to this day. Efforts to improve national security via heightened activity on the Mexican border is a waste of money if there is no effort to improve the Canadian border as well. The legal immigration policy of the United States is skewed to Europe at the near exclusion of many other nations.

You do not provide facts that dispute any of the points I have made. You have not commented on the immigration policy of this nation which does have a racial component to it. You ignored the point of the post which was the compensation of illegal aliens with money that comes from citizen taxes. You did not touch the point that terrorists have come via Canada into this nation illegally and thus more should be done to secure that border. You ignored the point that language is equally as important in identifying illegal aliens as is skin color.

If you feel I am racist, please tell me why. But do not claim I have made a racist commentary when you take a portion of what I said without considering the whole of what I have said.

This is what I think, what do you think?

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Responding to a reader comment Part 2 - 4.23.2007.2

Continued from Part 1...

The post went on to complain about ANY illegal alien receiving any aid that is derived from taxes I pay. As I mentioned above, I wouldn’t give it to Mother Theresa if she entered the nation illegally I won’t do it for anyone else. No student, that is an illegal alien, deserves any of the privileges of education given to citizens. Student aid for college is a benefit for citizens and no one else. I don’t care if they have lived here virtually all their lives, or if they speak English better than I do. I don’t pay taxes for them, nor should money that some struggling inner city youth could use to improve their life be diverted to an illegal alien child. If it were up to me, I’d take those kids that are illegal (and their parents) and as soon as they apply for student aid I’d round them up and deport them.

I say again, “I cannot fathom the argument that allows my money to benefit an illegal alien in gaining a higher education while denying that right to an African American, Hispanic or other citizen. What is the benefit to the nation? How does this improve America? How does this discourage more illegal aliens from bringing their children? Where does it stem the drain on my taxes.”

Going back to your comments, Canada is similar but that does not mean the same. Many Canadians refuse to speak English and want French as the national language. While I cannot comment on the lifestyle of Canada as I have not been there I am unaware of it being the equal of the United States in terms of economy, technology, freedoms of speech or other rights. Similar yes, but lower standard all the same. In that sense they are somewhat equal to Mexico. As I have mentioned before America is more favorable to any nation that shares in a European ancestry, which is also reflected in color of skin.

Skin color is a major issue in America. It always has been. To try to deny that is to be blind to the obvious in my opinion. We see this every day, on television, movies, and the legal system. Riots based on inequality of treatment have occurred for centuries, one of the more recent and notable being the L.A. riots over the Rodney King trial decision. I’ve spoken about various aspects of America’s issue on color on this blog and . Again I say, this is not a question nor racist. It is a fact and the truth of that can be found in everyday life as well as my blog sites. [What Georgia House Speaker Richardson should apologize for - 3.9.2007.1, The uneven hand of justice - 3.3.2007.1, Imus, Rutgers basketball, and Rev. Al Sharpton - 4.9.2007.1, Do you see a media bias? - 3.20.2007.1]

As for your theory that 1st world citizens of the world are interchangable, it is a subtle fallicy. It does not take into account culture, language, potential religious conflicts and other aspects. It also fails to define what is a first world nation. According to some America is the only 1st world nation, every other nation being secondary. Others state it is a combination of economic size, military power and technology. That classification made the former Soviet Union a 1st world nation. China, Japan, Australia, South Africa and other nations may or maynot be considered 1st world. None of those cultures are identical to America’s. In fact American culture is considered very unique in most aspects. Perhaps only England meshes with the least friction, and that is probably due to the historical connection our nations share.

Continued in part 3...

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Responding to a reader comment - 4.23.2007.1

This post is in reference to a comment made to the post Immigration and student aid for college

First I would like to thank Anonymous and Mike for responding. I know that these issues are a trigger point for many people, and that some may respond without spellchecking their comments. It’s not a big concern, but I mention it because I do not alter any aspect of the comments made. I just suggest pausing before sending the response, no matter how passionate you are on the issues (and I’m sure that is the cause of any typos and missing words your comments may contain).

To Anonymous I wish to say that my position does not change whether any illegal alien is proven to be a great person or not. If Mother Theresa was an illegal alien, I would not provide her healthcare or student aid as stated in my post. I don’t care how worthy an illegal alien may be, they don’t belong here and thus deserve nothing. That is my feeling, as stated above.

To Mike, I think you failed to read through the post intensely, or perhaps I was not clear. While I did make an assumption that a major motivation for the intense efforts against Hispanic illegal aliens is the ease in identifying them it is not merely due to the color of their skin. That is a part, but it is also the fact that many are not bi-lingual or even marginally competent in English. That lack of ability to communicate in the national language (and yes English is the national language) AND their darker color makes them an easier target than say a British White female. That not racist, it is a fact. If I am correct and the motivation of many lawmakers and others is solely fixed against Hispanic illegal aliens due to a fear based on their different look and manner of speech (like their influence is somehow ‘tainting’ America – one argument I have heard and dislike) then that is racist. I thought I had made this point directly, if I did not here it is now.

I must dispute another of your thoughts; it is skin color and language as opposed to standard of living and quantity. The policy on immigration to the United States has always been skewed to Europe versus any other country since the time of the first policy being made. It continues to emphasize immigration for Europeans today. I have not been to Italy, but I understand it to not be the same standard of living as here. Nor is most any other part of Europe except England.

When this policy says that a Polish, or Croatian, or Russian immigrant has an easier chance to immigrate, and has more chances as there are 3x as many people allowed than say Africans or South Americans, then I must conclude it is about skin color. Poland or Russia, as examples, is not similar in lifestyle, quality of life, or language yet they are given greater slots for entering this nation. That is a bias that’s sole, as I understand it, reason is color of skin. That is racist, if my understanding is correct.

But the focus of the post was more to the point of the disparity that should not exist. The argument of creating walls at our border with Mexico is claimed to be needed for security reasons. That seems silly when it’s considered that Canada is where all terrorists that have attacked, and several that planned to attack, this nation entered from. Lifestyle is not a factor here, nor is quantity of people. The argument is made for homeland security and thus Canada and not Mexico is the greater threat.

Continued in part 2...

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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Why did the massacre happen - 4.18.2007.1

I have to ask, what is going on with the world today? I just don’t get it. The horror that was Columbine has turned into a repeating story that just continues to get worse as time passes. I am sorry for all those that have lost a loved one.

What is the source of this insanity though? What makes young kids think that the solution to their problems is to murder innocent people and then kill themselves? How stupid could they be? Obviously quite. But it doesn’t make any sense. There are no tears shed for the perpetrator of such an act. The 7th ring of hell must surely be reserved for people that do these acts.

The problem does not lie with guns or gun control. I accept that the regulations in place may be too lax, improvement is needed. But there is no gun that can kill anyone on its own. The person wielding the gun holds the responsibility. The sick, no that’s the wrong word – vile and evil is more accurate, people that commit these acts would likely try to do the same things with a knife or sword or other weapon. It’s not the old Bugs Bunny cartoons that people have watched since the 1940’s. The problem is with the people and not their tools or kiddie television.

Where is the disciple that these kids needed? I can’t say there wasn’t any, but it seems to be missing. The same can be said of parental involvement. In most of these incidents the parents claim to be as surprised as the community at large. Something is just wrong with that. How can a parent not know their kid is building bombs, or hording weapons? Obviously that is not the case this time, but it seems to be a prevalent pattern. Another factor is that all these kids seem to be completely alone. Didn’t any parent notice the kid had no friends? That is just not normal, it should raise some eyebrows. Perhaps a conversation or 3 with the kid could have made the difference because drugs didn’t do it.

I was speaking with a friend about this and it came up that these events never happen in inner cities. The question was why not. The only reasons appear to be lack of money. Let me explain. Because these parents don’t have money (in general) for therapy sessions, mind-altering drugs, tons of video games and electronics, or other items that allow a kid to be isolated from society the kids have to interact with people and deal with problems.

It’s not like there aren’t more than enough guns in cities like New York, L.A., Chicago, D.C., or others. It’s not like there isn’t pressure or peer pressure or bullies. Hell, there are outright gangs from the small to the large. But there isn’t anywhere for the kids to hide from the world. As soon as they walk out the door the reality that there are worse things than school and grades to be worried about hits them, and they have to deal with it.

Could it be that simple? Take away the multitude of objects that provide a haven from reality and let the kids deal with problems. No prescription drugs, no conversations about how they feel. Definitely no parents that are too timid and fearful of not being their kids friend instead of being their parent. That seems to be the difference.

There will always be vile people in the world, it seems impossible to not have that in the world. But trying to ignore the problem of these children is not the answer. Destroying the 2nd Amendment won’t prevent it. Over-medicating is a failure as well. Before the government starts hauling any kid that might be a little different away or medicating them into a stupor, parents need to do their job. That doesn’t mean running to a doctor and passing the problem to someone else. It means dealing with your kid, pissing them off because you aren’t always their friend. It means providing them with discipline. It means not giving them the latest gadget, and kicking them out of the house to be around and play with the other kids near them outside. It means letting them get into a fight to defend and stand up for themselves. At least that’s what it meant when my siblings and I grew up (and my youngest sibling is 14 years younger so I’m not that out of touch on this).

I am afraid that the longer parents avoid their responsibility, the more this will happen. Maybe I’m wrong, but what do you have to lose? If the above fails, you still have the medication and therapy to fall back on. But that should be a last resort. It may not work for every vile idiot, may be some of them will just kill themselves without harm to others, but isn’t that better than what we see here?

This is what I think, what do you think?

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

The resolution in the Duke Rape Case - 4.11.2007.1

Well I just want to say a quick word on the Duke Rape case. Now that the 3 guys have had the charges dropped, a year of equality in the justice system has ended. I’m serious.

For the last year we have seen anger in white men about the miscarriage of justice they claimed occurred against these kids. In the last year they have had a chance to get a taste of the imbalance that can occur when a prosecutor decides he wants to go after a defendant. They got a glimpse of what Black men get all the time.

There is no question that if this was the Duke basketball team, and there were 3 Black Americans charged with raping a white stripper, they would have been convicted regardless of the DNA evidence or changes in the victims story. I have no doubt of this. Every media source would have been screaming for their conviction from day one. I have no doubt of this.

But in this case they got a moment of what it feels like to be railroaded. And the net effect is that the system has flaws, and many of them are based in race. Those race based flaws are not in favor of African Americans, but when they sway the other way they seem to get America’s attention. It’s like the one other notable case that America can’t get past, OJ Simpson’s trial.

When the system works in favor of people of color to the same degree it works against them, people lose their minds. It would be funny if it wasn’t so serious. And now the cries of how the boys lives have been destroyed. I don’t think so. Several of the kids from the team have graduated, with decent (3.52 gpa’s as I recall) grades and no backlash. A couple of the kids have returned to Duke to continue their college. They all have been exonerated. The email that was sent after the alleged rape has been forgotten a long time ago.

The kids had a very bad year. How many times do we see African Americans that are released from prison because evidence is found, or the case is reviewed and bias is determined as the reason for their conviction? That is a life ruined. This is just a life that has been in discomfort for the lacrosse team. I don’t feel bad for them.

I’ve said this before, I’ll say it again. I want to see the media put this kind of pressure and influence behind a Black defendant the next time there is a questionable case. I want to hear the media declarations of innocence for a poor black kid. It won’t happen, but I’d like to see that. Especially from those that are losing their impartiality at Fox News.

And I’d love to see the outrage when, let just say as an example, 2 teenage white girls rob a bank in the south let’s say near Atlanta (without weapons) and the charges are dropped from a felony charge to misdemeanors even though they were caught on tape doing this felony crime, and witnesses saw them, and they bragged about it as they went on a shopping spree for 2 days afterwards. Robbing a bank is a felony, where is the outrage at the miscarriage of justice there? Do you think for a second I would be treated in anything like the same casual, light-handed treatment?

Wait a second. Fox News is going to reveal the name of the accusing rape victim?? Even without the charges, this is a wrong thing. I’ve never heard of such a thing. Yeah, this is fair. And her PHOTO!!! So this is fair? What a nice first. And her age and family background. Might as well give away her address. And her past history!!! This is so wrong.

This is what I think, what do you think?

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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Imus is a sympton, what is the problem? - 4.10.2007.2

What a day. There has been a lot of discussion on Mr. Don Imus and his comments against the women’s basketball team for Rutgers University. I’ve written a bit about it as well. I’ve also had, and continue to have several conversations on this with men and women, Whites, Hispanic/Latinos, and African Americans of ages from mid-twenties to the mid-forties. While there is no one that supports Mr. Imus, that I have been in touch with, there are differences in what should be done.

Every woman I have spoken too has been amazed that Mr. Imus would make such a statement. Each has been shocked and outraged by his words. To say that they took his words as offensive is to say the least. Every one of them has been absolute in their decision to see him fired.

As for the men, there are different takes on what the outcome should be. I’ve seen a guy bowled over by the comments, just stunned. I’ve seen a young man that felt it should be shrugged off. I’ve discussed this with a man that felt resignation or firing would be too harsh a punishment. And there have been calls for him to be gone.

So I have absorbed it all. And I have been challenged to explain why I felt the need for Mr. Imus to be fired. I want to share part of my reasoning, because the fact is this goes far deeper to the national psyche than anyone seems to be addressing right now.

Mr. Imus attacked innocent women that never gave a reason for this attack. They did not deserve or engender any reason for it. I doubt that any woman could. But I will give the point that were this a public figure, a politician or comedian or some such, then perhaps there could have been some sliver of humor. Had this been a response to an attack against Mr. Imus, then perhaps there could be some understanding of his words. In either of those cases perhaps there could be room for him keeping his job after an apology. But that is not the case.

I commented yesterday that I felt the decision to suspend Mr. Imus was a vacation being forced on him. I still stand by that thought. My fear was that this was something the corporations behind his radio station wanted to just wait out the storm and go back to business as usual. The fact that the suspension would not take place for a week was puzzling and seemingly confirmation of this. I have heard that the reason for the delay is due to fundraising for charities this week by Mr. Imus. I cannot confirm that right now, though it could explain why the controversy was created, though not excuse it. Obviously NBC and CBS have been evaluating the situation and seeing how the sponsors react, because that is the defining factor for them, money. Were there any other reasons that the corporations cared about action would have been immediate and far sterner.

But the pressure has run up quickly. Mr. Al Roker, who works at NBC, has called for dismissal, along with many others. I have heard that 3 sponsors have left his show, most notably Staples, but again I cannot confirm this. There has been a small protest at CBS corporate offices, and coverage in most news media (except the local Binghamton newspaper). At least one interviewee has canceled so far.

continued at my Black Entertainment USA site ...

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Repost - Imus, Rutgers basketball, and Rev. Al Sharpton - 4.9.2007.1

This is a repost of this conversation found at my - Black Entertainment USA

Ok, I’m a bit behind on this event. What can I say, I don’t like basketball and I don’t listen to either the Imus radio show or the show of Rev. Al Sharpton. As such I only recently found out about the disparaging comments made last Wednesday by Mr. Don Imus. To say I am upset is an understatement.

For those that may be in a similar situation as myself, Mr. Imus called the Rutgers women’s basketball, “…some nappy-headed hos”. This was in response to Mr. Bernard McGuirk’s comment, “some hardcore hos.” By the way, no one has asked for the resignation of Mr. McGuirk, though his comments are no less insulting. Obviously there are a lot of problems here.

Let me start with Mr. McGuirk. The fact that he calls Black women hos is despicable. I understand the argument that calling women as such is common because rappers and hip-hop entertainers do so, but that does not make it proper. I have discussed rappers using such insulting terms to describe women, I disagree with that and I disagree with this. He provided the fuel by which the far better known Mr. Imus created this furor. While I am in favor of severe actions against Mr. Imus, I feel Mr. McGuirk cannot be left out either.

As for Imus, well I’m not surprised. There has been a long history of ill-toned comments against African Americans by him. This is just another example, and furthers the viability of his being removed from the air. I find his apologies half-hearted, motivated by fear of losing his position more than his own true feelings.

Mr. Imus has tried to excuse his commentary, when speaking to Rev. Sharpton, by referring to the fact that other African Americans entertainers and people use this term often. That did not fly with Rev. Sharpton, nor does it with me. That seems to remind me of the comment my mother used to say, “If everyone jumped of a bridge, would you do it to?” To claim that one person should be excused because of the infantile actions of another, when both are acting badly, assumes that everyone involved and everyone listening is stupid. I am not, nor do I believe you my readers are either.

I understand that at 66, Mr. Imus is part of a culture that believe calling Black Americans “colored” or the n-word was a commonplace act. He grew up and was taught that African Americans were second-class citizens at best, and that the need to be separated from them socially and economically was an imperative. I understand that that was the truth of the time of his formative years. Yet that does not excuse his actions. As a seemingly intelligent man, who has worked for decades in entertainment and has lived in the probably most diversified city in the nation, he should know better. He should be capable of understanding that individuals are not stereotypes, and that stereotypes invariably target the worst aspects of any group of people.

An intelligent man does not need to demean women. An intelligent man does not need to comment on a group of sports players based on their hair or its style. An intelligent man does not need to make back-handed “compliments” to be humorous. Most importantly an intelligent man accepts the responsibility and repercussions of their actions and comments, even when this is a detrimental result. That is part of my expectation of any intelligent man.

Pleas that Mr. Imus is a good man are irrelevant. Even less relevant by the fact that it is Mr. Imus making the plea. To speak about the acts of kindness he does for a few does not excuse the damage he does to millions. I don’t care if Mr. Imus despises African Americans. That’s his choice. I do care how he speaks about us in a public forum.

I don’t agree with anyone referring to someone’s hair/hairstyle in a discussion that pertains to anything but that. Hair does not define a person any more than skin color. Does the fact that Mr. Donald Trump may have a hairpiece change anything about him? Does that mean that all men that might have a toupee share his exact qualities? If such an argument sounds ludicrous then the words of Mr. Imus are no less so. What I would like to hear Mr. Imus, and Mr. McGuirk, explain is what makes the Black women of the Rutgers basketball team hos. Then I want to hear what makes their hair nappy. And then perhaps I can hear how either of these comments have anything to do with basketball or the abilities of these women. I would listen to Mr. Imus explain that, and I’d like him to do this in front of the women that he has nationally demeaned. And then he should still be fired. Not resign, fired. He has given up his right to save face in this matter.

I do not often agree with Rev. Al Sharpton, but I find his one comment to be correct, “I accept his apology, just as I want his bosses to accept his resignation.”

This is what I think, what do you think?

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Thursday, April 05, 2007

Letter to Rudy Giuliani - 4.5.2007.1

This is an unaltered copy of a letter sent to Mr. Rudy Giuliani. Any response made will be posted, unaltered, when recieved.

To see other letters sent to Presidential candidates, visit M V Consulting, Inc.

April 5, 2007

Mr. Giuliani,

I am writing you in regard to your current attempt to gain the Republican nomination for the race for President of the United States in 2008. I am a native New Yorker and lived in the city during your time as Mayor of that city. I am also President of M V Consulting, Inc., a non-partisan corporation that has not contributed to any politician or political group, which maintains several internet businesses including blogs. I add that I have not contributed to any politician or party, nor have any of my sites advocated any individual or party in regard to the upcoming Presidential election.

I say all of this because I would like to ask you some questions on why you feel you should be President of the United States. It is my goal to post your response, as well as this letter, unaltered on my blogs for my readers to evaluate. I feel that the 2008 election is a critical point for the United States and its future. As such I believe it is important for as wide an audience of the public as possible to be informed in their voting choices. In addition I feel it important that I inform you that no changes to any response you provide will be made.

I add that I have already sent a similar letter to several other candidates of both parties. If you wish to review the letters that were sent previously, and where any response you make will be placed, please go to:

I thank you in advance for your co-operation in answering these questions for my readers and myself.

For many Americans the first time you came to national attention was after the attacks of September 11. What many may not realize is that you started your political career as a Democrat. What led you to change your political affiliation? What changed in your political ideology that caused this move?

Many may not recall that in 1989 you ran for Mayor of New York City and lost to Mr. David Dinkins. What did you attribute to this loss and what did you learn from it?

During your time as Mayor of New York City you implemented several programs that had mixed results. One of those actions was the renovation of the West 42nd street area. Many native New Yorkers feel that the area was sold out to major corporations, in particular Disney, and the soul of the area was lost as well as multiple mom-and-pop business owners. To those detractors, what would you say were your reasons and what benefits were gained by the average New Yorker?

Another matter that was received in a mixed manner was your choice of police commissioner and the law enforcement policies during your term of office. During your time as Mayor, Mr. Amidou Diallo and Mr. Patrick Dorismond were murdered by police officers in a disturbing manner and Mr. Abner Louima was tortured by police officers which was then attempted to be covered up. These policies and your defense of the police department created a significant atmosphere of anger and cries of racism among the African American, Hispanic/Latino and other minority groups in the city; that was not covered significantly across the nation. For those African American and minority voters in the nation, what are your views on law enforcement? Where do you stand on Affirmative Action and other reforms that address racial inequality?

Considering the strong stance against organized crime and for law enforcement, as seen from your actions mentioned above and in your work as a U.S. Attorney, what stance do you believe America should take under your potential leadership towards countries such as Iran, and towards terrorist groups such as Al Quida?

Considering the record number of drop-outs that are African American, and the problems in education nationally in general, what efforts would you emphasize to improve the situation?

Of late there has been a great deal of discussion regarding a national healthcare program. Are you in favor of such a program and if so how would you fund this program? One of the arguments against such a program involves the question of whether the quality of healthcare could be maintained, and what motivation or incentive would pharmaceutical companies have to continue to research new medicines. What are your thoughts on this?

A current focus point of debate is the War in Iraq. Many Americans are upset about the status of the war, and others seek to retreat from this engagement entirely. Repercussions from any decision in this matter are probable to have ramifications for some time in the future of this nation. Where do you stand on this debate? What path do you intend to follow if you are elected? What do you see as potential outcomes of your proposed actions in the next 5 years?

It is well known that you are a cancer survivor. The health of the future President of the nation is a concern for many Americans. To that end I ask what your current health status is. In addition, I would never wish cancer on anyone, but if your cancer were to return and you had been elected President how do you believe you will react? Based on your experience initially, how do you feel this could affect you actions and responsibilities as President?

In recent media interviews you mentioned that your wife could be involved in non-policy meetings, if you are elected. Many may have heard this comment and the flurry of comments about it. Not as many may have heard your subsequent explanation on this matter. Could you explain that for my readers?

I want to thank you for taking the time to read this letter. I look forward to your response. I again mention that this letter and any response will be posted without any alteration.

Michael Vass

President - M V Consulting, Inc.
Author - Black Entertainment USA and Vass

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Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Reflecting on more than 3 decades - 4.3.2007.1

Well another year is about to be added to the time I’ve lived on the planet and I want to share some thoughts on my experiences in my nearly 4 decades of life. One of the first things is that once you start turning grey (which started for me at 33) you can get grey hairs everywhere. You can imagine my surprise coming out the shower thinking I had a string on me and finding out it was actually a grey hair. I’m an intelligent guy, but I had no idea.

But on more serious observations, from the 70’s to today I’ve seen the world change dramatically. Black culture has had no less of a profound evolution for lack of a better term. In the 70’s there was no internet, or computers, cell phones or cd’s. These were good things not to have. I love my computer and the internet. I enjoy the anime I can see due to the creation and expansion of cable television. Yet, they are superfluous at best.

With the growth of interconnectivity on an almost instantaneous level, there has been a loss of real connection between people. Worse has been the hardening of hearts, if you will, that has taken place. Today we can send out a text to hundreds of people, but the time spent with close friends in person has dwindled. We have become more superficial in our contact with each other, or so it appears to me.

As a Black Puerto Rican I have seen this play out to see the wholesale commoditization of the culture. Being African American today is more about clothing styles, speech patterns and social interaction in the most visible sense. Millions across the world adopt the same mannerisms as what appears to make African Americans Black, because it’s a trend and fad that can be taken for a while without any of the negative repercussions it confers to those of color. It’s a waste in every sense of the word.

In the seventies I recall an ad on television by the NAACP about a Black man not being able to go to college. The key phrase I recall is, “A mind is a terrible thing to waste.” It seems too few saw this public announcement as today we have the highest levels of high school drop-outs than ever before. Think about that for a moment. We have the ability to access information about virtually any subject, from almost anywhere in the world, almost immediately, and our children and peers know less today than a decade ago to say nothing of 2 or 3 decades. We have fewer kids going to and graduating from college than ever. Knowledge, the greatest tool and treasure, surrounds us and yet few are reaching their hand out to take it. I do not have words for my anger and sadness on this fact.

Over past decades of my life I saw drugs move from a shady and reclusive item, hidden from children and the public at large, to a normal daily fact of life. It’s so pervasive and accepted that kids today grow up with dreams of becoming dealers, as opposed to wanting to be doctors and lawyers. If that isn’t a fundamental breakdown I’m not sure what is. How did this happen? The subtle and persistent acceptance by law enforcement, and the culture, of drugs in low income areas. The acceptance of drug dealing money in our neighborhoods. Lastly because we failed to educate ourselves and our children, instead blaming other sources for the failures around us.

Continued at my

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