Sunday Open Thread

Sweet Honey in the Rock is an all-woman, African-American a cappella ensemble. They are an American Grammy Award-winning (and many times nominated) troupe who express their history as women of color through song, dance, and sign language.[1] They have together worked from four women to the difficult five-part harmony with a sixth member translating with sign language. Although the members have changed over 3 decades, they continue to sing and have helped to produce several children’s records as well as those intended for adults.

About SouthernGirl2

A Native Texan who adores baby kittens, loves horses, rodeos, pomegranates, & collect Eagles. Enjoys politics, games shows, & dancing to all types of music. Loves discussing and learning about different cultures. A Phi Theta Kappa lifetime member with a passion for Social & Civil Justice.
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26 Responses to Sunday Open Thread

  1. Ametia says:


  2. Ametia says:

    Catching up on some of PBO’s Latin America trip

  3. Ametia says:

    President Obama with Presidents & dignataries from the AMERICAS

  4. rikyrah says:

    Just want to thank The Urban Politico for having us on their radio show. It was lots of fun.

  5. Ametia says:

    Join the Ladies of @Urban_Politico and @3ChicsPolitico live on the air at 5pm EST at

    #BlogTalkRadio #waronwomen

  6. rikyrah says:

    Saturday, April 14, 2012
    Hold Your Horses, Now

    Posted by Bon Tindle

    Gay rights organizations are criticizing President Obama for his refusal to sign an executive order forbidding federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

    Obama aides delivered the message to gay rights groups yesterday, saying they want Congress to pass an anti-discrimination law.

    “Our organizers and activists are really angry about this,” said Heather Cronk, managing director of a civil rights group called GetEqual. “It’s really worrisome that the White House is not taking a stand on this.”

    Okay, the strategy makes sense. Obama is about to campaign, so it’s a good time to pressure and ask questions. Everyone knows this is a hot button, with Republicans taking a loud stance against gay rights and Dems afraid to touch the subject in some cases.

    But guys, give Obama the benefit of the doubt, and if you want to help the cause give him a bit of space. If he wins a second term and has nothing to fear, I have zero doubt that he is going to put some stupidity in its place. To the utmost of his ability, he has already shown he is in favor of fair treatment and choice for people whenever possible. By pushing the issue it could force him into arguments that could actually backfire. Because let’s face it, Obama is the best shot many groups have of representation. Right now it makes sense for him to do his best to prepare for stage two.

    After seeing how Republicans attacked him for every single decision he made, in some instances it is simply better that he play it safe. He has shown no animosity or lack of respect for gays or women, so it’s time for us to rally behind him and let him know we’re there. He may not be perfect, but he tries. He’s the best chance we have of climbing out of this mess.

  7. rikyrah says:

    Political Animal
    April 15, 2012 9:34 AM

    Mitt Romney and the Cult of True Womanhood

    By Sara Mead

    Kudos to the Up With Chris Hayes team for unearthing this video of Mitt Romney, at a New Hampshire rally in January, lauding his record of requiring mothers of children as young as 2 to experience the “dignity of work” as a condition of receiving public benefits. So, apparently, raising children is only work if you look like Ann Romney.

    But this type of double standard is nothing new. Our political and public discourse around the family—to our great detriment—often behaves as though history began in the 1950s. But the idea that there are two types of women—White, married, virtuous, affluent “true women” and then pretty much everyone else—is an old one, dating back at least to the Victorian Era Cult of Domesticity. While “true women,” by confining themselves to the domestic sphere and womanly arts of childbearing, rearing, and making a harmonious family home, both required and deserved men’s protection from the slights of the harsh world, it was tough cookies for the majority of women who didn’t fit that model (from white working class women, to widows and single mothers, to women of color, like Sojourner Truth in her famous speech)—not to mention their kids.

    And that’s pretty much exactly the attitude on display here, as well. Interestingly, the Cult of Domesticity, by placing the creation of a harmonious and virtuous home environment as a true woman’s primary objective in life, and the protection of that environment as her husband’s, actually provided a justification for huge inequalities of wealth and income and abuses of workers by these same virtuous husbands during the Victorian and Gilded Eras—and we may be seeing something of a similar dynamic today in conservative positions on economic inequality and the labor market.

  8. rikyrah says:

    April 15, 2012 10:00 AM
    What Would it Take to Get a Real Child Care Conversation in this Country?

    By Sara Mead

    One final thought about Mitt Romney and the war on most moms: In the same video clip referenced below, Romney also brags about increasing spending on child care assistance to help these moms of 2-year-olds go back to work. But we know that states have been cutting childcare assistance, thousands of families have lost services or been placed on waitlists, and Romney’s own budget proposals, by squeezing the federal domestic funds that are the major source of childcare subsidies, would further worsen the problem.

    And I’m somehow skeptical that expanding access to childcare for working families is going to play a prominent (or any) role in Romney’s agenda—no matter how much he may want low-income moms to experience the “dignity of work.” Yet, as mind-boggling and frustrating as this ridiculous debate over the past week has been, if it yields just a little bit, just a smidge, of real national attention and better conversation about the challenges facing “working families” (whether both or either parents work), childcare, and how we as a society (not just government and policy) do and do not support families and kids, that would be completely worthwhile. I realize that’s probably a completely insane hope, but there’s something about a beautiful spring morning in D.C. that can make you think the craziest things are possible.

    It’s worth remembering, of course, that, during the Nixon administration, the United States came thisclose to having a national childcare policy that would have given working families access to high-quality, developmental childcare. In the late 1960s, Nixon and his administration supported an expanded federal role in childcare, citing both the educational needs of young children and a growing demand from working mothers. But by 1971, when Congress passed the Comprehensive Child Development Act, Nixon, eager to solidify connections with conservative Christian voters who had contributed to his 1968 victory, vetoed it. Nixon’s veto message, written by Pat Buchanan, bemoaned the “family-weakening implications” of a “communal approach to child-rearing,” setting a tone that continues—despite the evidence—to characterize debate about childcare and the family today, as can be seen in this week’s hullabaloo over Ann Romney and working moms.

  9. rikyrah says:

    We Don’t Need No Education
    By Betty Cracker April 15th, 2012

    North Carolina Rep. Virginia Foxx went on convicted felon G. Gordon Liddy’s wingnut talk radio show last week to denounce all these students and recent college grads who are bitching about their student loans:

    I went through school, I worked my way through, it took me seven years, I never borrowed a dime of money. He borrowed a little bit because we both were totally on our own when we went to college, totally. […] I have very little tolerance for people who tell me that they graduate with $200,000 of debt or even $80,000 of debt because there’s no reason for that. We live in an opportunity society and people are forgetting that. I remind folks all the time that the Declaration of Independence says “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” You don’t have it dumped in your lap.

    Of course, the expense today’s students incur is a bit more steep than the cost of obtaining a Bachelor of Science in Dinosaur Husbandry during Foxx’s youth, even spread out across seven years. How much more? It’s hard to do a direct comparison since not all of the chiseled stone tablets used to record educational expenses in Foxx’s day have been digitalized. But here’s a chart that illustrates how tuition costs have risen since 1985:

    Could a near 600% increase have something to do with ballooning student indebtedness? Possibly! Here’s the punchline: Foxx chairs the House Subcommittee on Higher Education. Hahahaha!

  10. rikyrah says:

    Two Can Be Insulting

    by BooMan
    Sat Apr 14th, 2012 at 04:49:03 PM EST
    Stuff you can’t make up:

    Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC) took on a unique enemy during a radio interview yesterday: people with student loans.

    Though many politicians sympathize with those who are saddled with exorbitant student debt, Foxx, who chairs the House subcommittee on higher education, had a different take.

    Appearing on G. Gordon Liddy’s radio show, the North Carolina congresswoman recounted her own experience paying for college, where she worked her way through and graduated after seven years. Foxx then pointed to her own experience as justification for why she has “very little tolerance for people who tell me that they graduate with $200,000 of debt or even $80,000 of debt.” “There’s no reason for that,” she concluded…

    She can’t feign ignorance of the soaring tuition costs at American colleges and universities, because she chairs the house committee that focuses on higher education. Yet, this old coot still says that there is no reason why people are graduating with hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt. In fact, she can’t even tolerate such people.

  11. rikyrah says:

    Good Luck With That

    by BooMan

    Sun Apr 15th, 2012 at 09:40:05 AM EST

    Mahablog has the screen capture. The Wall Street Journal actually used the headline: Winning the War Against Women for an editorial explaining how Republicans can win women over to their side. I know it’s supposed to be ironic or something, but its real irony is unintentional. Did you know, for example, that one of the biggest problems facing women is that they can get paid overtime if they work over 40 hours a week in a wage-paid job? Did you also know that the reason some women can’t afford to work is because their husbands make too much money? Well, it’s true, and it’s all part of the Democratic Party’s war on women.

    Next week the Journal will explain: Winning the War Against Minorities and Homosexuals.

    I can’t wait.

  12. rikyrah says:

    Paul Ryan Gets Slapped Down

    by BooMan

    Sun Apr 15th, 2012 at 10:36:11 AM est

    I’m just guessing here, but I think more Catholics will nod their head in agreement with the following than did when the Church got upset about contraceptive coverage in health care plans.

    Nearly 60 prominent theologians, priests, nuns and national Catholic social justice leaders released a statement today refuting Rep. Paul Ryan’s claim that his GOP budget proposal reflects Catholic teaching on care for the poor, which he made in an interview earlier this week with the Christian Broadcasting Network. The group of Catholic leaders — including a former high-ranking U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops official, a priest in Rep. Ryan’s district and the leadership team of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas — called on Ryan to “reconsider his radical budget proposal and refrain from distorting Church teaching.”

    “If Rep. Ryan thinks a budget that takes food and healthcare away from millions of vulnerable people upholds Catholic values, then he also probably believes Jesus was a Tea Partier who lectured the poor to stop being so lazy and work harder,” said John Gehring, Catholic Outreach Coordinator at Faith in Public Life. “This budget turns centuries of Catholic social teaching on its head. These Catholic leaders and many Catholics in the pews are tired of faith being misused to bless an immoral agenda.”

    The leaders wrote: “Simply put, this budget is morally indefensible and betrays Catholic principles of solidarity, just taxation and a commitment to the common good. A budget that turns its back on the hungry, the elderly and the sick while giving more tax breaks to the wealthiest few can’t be justified in Christian terms.”

  13. rikyrah says:

    Analysis: Obama leads in projected electoral vote totals

    By BYRON TAU |
    4/14/12 10:03 AM EDT

    The AP looks at the state of the presidential race and outlines the battlegrounds — and finds that President Obama leads the likely Republican nominee (at this point probably Mitt Romney) by a significant margin.

    According to the AP, the GOP has 188 electorate votes that are either solidly Republican or leaning Republican. Obama has 242 electoral votes in safe Democratic or likely Democratic states, leaving 104 electoral votes in states that are purely tossups. 270 electorate votes are needed to be elected president.

    No surprises here, but the AP outlines the battleground states:

    Colorado (9) — Long a reliable GOP state, but Colorado’s conservative profile is changing. An influx of young professionals and Hispanic voters were keys to Obama’s victory in 2008. The economy has hurt him standing. Female voters in vote-rich Denver suburbs are likely to be key.

    Florida (29) — Florida is the prime target for both campaigns. Obama won in 2008, but the housing crisis, high unemployment and gas prices are dogging him. Romney won the primary in January and has picked up endorsement of freshman Sen. Marco Rubio. Obama’s organization has a big advantage six months out.

    Iowa (6) — An important George W. Bush-state pick-up for Obama. Iowa has been a national popular vote bellwether for 20 years. Obama’s attention in the state where his caucus victory launched him in 2008 is countered by Romney’s two caucus campaigns. Conservatives are leery of Romney’s Mormon faith and social issue profile, but he’s got pro-business GOP Gov. Terry Branstad on his side.

    New Hampshire (3) — Romney’s backyard and vacation home. He won the 2012 primary big, but Obama peeled off this Bush state in 2008 and has worked hard to keep it. Vice President Joe Biden visited Friday. But the GOP is back in power in Legislature, and new Sen. Kelly Ayotte is seen as asset for Romney.

    New Mexico (5) — New Mexico emerged as a swing state in the past decade. Democrat Al Gore, then Bush, then Obama carried it. An influx of Hispanic and younger voters has Obama team confident. Gov. Susana Martinez, a rising GOP star elected in 2010, gives the Romney team hope.

    Nevada (6) — Part of a triad of Southwestern states Obama flipped in 2008. Nevada is also the prime example of the economy’s struggles. Unemployment was 12.3 percent in February, a point Romney will press. There’s a strong labor and Hispanic vote, a plus for Obama. A higher Mormon population helps Romney.

    North Carolina (15) — Obama was the first Democrat to win North Carolina in 32 years and he hopes again to turn out a high percentage of newcomers and minorities. Romney is contesting the state, an outlier for Obama in 2008, aides say. Obama hopes that holding the party’s national convention in Charlotte in September proves a boost.

    Ohio (18) — The ultimate Midwestern swing state has been a general election bellwether since 1980. Romney won the 2012 primary and has support from establishment figures such as Sen. Rob Portman. Obama has the organizing advantage, although the economy remains a sticking point, especially in the industrial northwest.

    Virginia (13) — Long a GOP bastion, Obama carried Virginia in 2008 by turning out young and minority voters. An influx of under-35 crowd, especially from the Washington, D.C., area, has continued. But Republicans roared back in 2010, ending consecutive Democratic administrations in governorship by electing up-and-comer Bob McDonnell.

    It’s early yet, but the map gives President Obama’s team a lot more flexibility in terms of building a winning map. In a video to supporters in December, Jim Messina laid out the strategy that his team was pursuing to get to 270.

  14. rikyrah says:

    Mitt Romney: Mothers Should Be Required To Work Outside Home Or Lose Benefits

    Posted: 04/15/2012 7:04 am Updated: 04/15/2012 10:45 am

    Poor women who stay at home to raise their children should be given federal assistance for child care so that they can enter the job market and “have the dignity of work,” Mitt Romney said in January, undercutting the sense of extreme umbrage he showed when Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen quipped last week that Ann Romney had not “worked a day in her life.”

    The remark, made to a Manchester, N.H., audience, was unearthed by MSNBC’s “Up w/Chris Hayes,” and aired during the 8 a.m. hour of his show Sunday.

    Ann Romney and her husband’s campaign fired back hard at Rosen following her remark. “I made a choice to stay home and raise five boys. Believe me, it was hard work,” Romney said on Twitter.

    Mitt Romney, however, judging by his January remark, views stay-at-home moms who are supported by federal assistance much differently than those backed by hundreds of millions in private equity income. Poor women, he said, shouldn’t be given a choice, but instead should be required to work outside the home to receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families benefits. “[E]ven if you have a child 2 years of age, you need to go to work,” Romney said of moms on TANF.

    Recalling his effort as governor to increase the amount of time women on welfare in Massachusetts were required to work, Romney noted that some had considered his proposal “heartless,” but he argued that the women would be better off having “the dignity of work” — a suggestion Ann Romney would likely take issue with.

    “I wanted to increase the work requirement,” said Romney. “I said, for instance, that even if you have a child 2 years of age, you need to go to work. And people said, ‘Well that’s heartless.’ And I said, ‘No, no, I’m willing to spend more giving day care to allow those parents to go back to work. It’ll cost the state more providing that daycare, but I want the individuals to have the dignity of work.'”

  15. Ametia says:

    Good Morning, Everyone! :-)

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