Sunday Open Thread

I hope you are enjoying this weekend with family and friends.

This entry was posted in Gospel, Music, Open Thread, Politics and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

64 Responses to Sunday Open Thread

  1. rikyrah says:

    How ‘Selling a Home While Black’ Nearly Broke Me

    With deadines looming and houses selling all around her wealthy neighborhood, even real estate agents admitted that race seemed to be a factor in why the writer’s house wouldn’t sell.
    By: Jenn M. Jackson
    Posted: Feb. 4 2015 3:00 AM

    Everyone tells you it’s hard to sell a home nowadays. No one tells you how hard it is to sell a home while black.

    Last March we did all the things you are supposed to do when selling a half-million-dollar Orange County, Calif., home. We packed items we were no longer using. We downsized our furniture. We painted baseboards and repaired walls. We even bought new wall art to neutralize the feel. After seeing several comparable homes sell within weeks of listing, we were certain we would only be on the market for a month at most. We were wrong.

    Our agents held open house after open house. One Saturday, a white couple was returning to the home for a second visit. They had come before without their children and wanted to show their oldest son. But he wouldn’t walk upstairs. According to our agents, he seemed anxious. He just wanted to leave. Sadly, the couple never returned.

    Following that experience, we removed a few more of our personal items, thinking maybe the home wasn’t race-neutral enough. We put away books, removed every photo of our children—no matter how small they were—and even packed away Christmas cards from family and friends.


    By the end of summer, we had several low offers and were approaching a deadline to move out of state. We had seen homes identical to ours sell for much higher than our list price. Homes that came on the market after ours sold within days. The only discernible difference was the race of the occupants. More than one real estate agent acknowledged that they couldn’t figure out another reason for the house’s failure to move, and understood our distress.

    In desperation, we re-listed with new agents and hired a professional stager for one last push to sell the home.

    When we finally received a cash offer well below our asking price, we accepted. But instead of meeting the buyer and shaking his hand, we avoided him. Every walk-through was scheduled with our agents. Every transfer of documents went through them. Paranoid about him discovering our race, we were unwilling to risk losing another buyer.

    In the end, we sold our home. It took longer than planned and cost us both emotionally and financially. Our experiences showed us that while we could change everything about our home, we couldn’t change the color of our skin, nor the stigma attached to it. From the onset, we knew that black-owned homes were deemed less valuable. But we underestimated the impact that would have on our sale in a predominantly white neighborhood.

    We have added this to our lessons learned. Now we know better than to underestimate the power of anti-blackness.

  2. rikyrah says:

    How Reality TV Has Changed Our Daughters

    One mother wrestles with the influence of these popular shows depicting anti-social behavior, excessive materialism and especially a lack of sisterhood.

    By: Janelle Harris
    Posted: Feb. 5 2015 7:16 AM

    Black girl magic is a magnetic power. It’s the phenomenal-woman effect that draws attention and makes the world watch for us.

    What we wear. How we wear it.

    What we say. How we say it.

    What we listen to, what we watch, what we read, what we buy. Our brilliance shapes trends.

    Media industrialists who churn out reality television know that. We sell, not because of the us that we authentically are, but because Joe and Jane America have been voyeurs to our cussing, bickering, scratching, tugging, dissing, thrashing and throttling dysfunction, and they like it. It’s entertaining to us, and for nonblack folks not in the know, it confirms their just-a-little-bit-racist prejudices about how we live and behave.

    In the last 10 years, more than 150 reality shows have aired across major networks. Of those, about 30 have centered around black women, the next spurred by the success of the one before it, escorting casts of previously unknowns into instant celebrity.

    They suddenly have legions of admirers and fans and followers, consisting largely of our young girls. They dote on these women’s high-end glamour, an accoutrement of a lifestyle that represents wealth, success and general fabulousness, and adopt the adversarial posture that chicks are bound to hate on them and keep them from shining.

    Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has said, “The single story creates stereotypes, and the problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete. They make one story become the only story.” That’s what black women’s stories in reality TV have been: formulaic, monolithic tales of manufactured, ratings-boosting friction. These are our girls’ image-makers.

  3. rikyrah says:

    Sinbad says that Hollywood has always hated Cosby
    Published On February 14, 2015 | By Admin |

    Sinbad has been in the industry for a very long time. He also seems to be an honest guy with some good, strong opinions. Here’s he’s on The Breakfast Club talking about his mentor Bill Cosby and the allegations against him. He actually has some interesting things to say.

    The premise of Sinbad’s remarks seems to be that he feels that Cosby’s power in the industry might have led to a snowball effect, where some of the allegations simply came along because people were jumping on the bandwagon. After all, if someone says that they went to see Cosby several times, and that Cosby was drugging their drink on multiple visits, for what reason did the person keep coming back to Cosby’s hotel room to drink with him?

    Is it that Hollywood is just into some freaky stuff that sounds terrible to the public, but is normal for those willing to do anything to make it big in the industry? At least the Cosby era put things on TV that black people could watch and be proud of. “A Different World” was a great show and had an effect on young people that is just the opposite of what they’re seeing on TV today.

    The interview makes you wonder why Sinbad’s not on TV anymore. He also looks like he hasn’t aged a bit in the last 20 years. He comes across as a smart and thoughtful guy as well, you’ll enjoy the conversation.

  4. rikyrah says:

    Cookie Monster: How Cookie Lyon Became the Most Compelling Character on TV

    Whether you love the show or hate it, we can all agree that Cookie, played by Taraji P. Henson, is the breakout star of Empire.

    By: Michael Arceneaux
    Posted: Feb. 15 2015 3:00 AM

    For all of Empire’s critics—and admittedly, I’ve been among them—there has been one aspect of the show that fans, skeptics and those residing somewhere in between have all agreed on: Cookie, played by Taraji P. Henson, is the best thing about the show.

    Cookie is the ex-wife of Lucious Lyon—a drug dealer-turned-rapper-turned-Jay Z-like figure with Motown-era hairstyles—who helped foster Lucious’ dream of running a major record label by providing the seed money she procured through selling drugs. As a new parolee, Cookie is out to get what’s hers: her piece of the company and her charting her own success within the music industry. The Fox hip-hop-centered soap opera, which continues to make gains in the ratings, has been rightfully described as the Oscar-nominated actress’s moment.

    For those who have watched Henson through the years, we knew she had a funny bone, by way of films like Baby Boy, along with the capability to tackle dramatic roles, thanks to The Curious Case of Benjamin Button; however, this is really the first time that Henson has had the opportunity to be the de facto showpiece of a project. She has made the most of it.

    Cookie is so many things—loud, blunt, hood as hell, smart, funny and savvy—and as such, she is the most fleshed-out character on Empire, and increasingly one of the most compelling ones on television. Much of that is testament to the talent of Henson, who has managed to turn what could easily have been described as a caricature into a multifaceted persona.

  5. rikyrah says:

    $16 house? Dallas area man evicted after squatting
    Published February 06, 2012

    FLOWER MOUND, Texas – After paying $16 to file a one-page claim to an empty, $340,000 home in an upscale Dallas suburb, Kenneth Robinson moved in furniture, hung a “No Trespassing” sign in the front window and invited television cameras inside for a tour.

    He quickly turned into something of a local celebrity, creating a website, , where he sold an e-book and offered training sessions for would-be squatters. And while real estate experts and authorities say he’s misusing the law, Robinson appears to have inspired dozens of imitators who moved into Dallas-Fort Worth area homes — some of which were still occupied by their owners.

    But Robinson’s time in the house ran out Monday.

    Bank of America wants possession after foreclosing on the home last month, and a judge on Monday gave Robinson until Feb. 13 to appeal or move out. Rather than wait to be evicted, Robinson slipped out before sunrise Monday, skipped a morning court hearing and refused to say where he was moving next.

    “It’s been a huge learning experience,” he said in a phone call with reporters.

    On his website, Robinson describes himself as a savvy investor who’s part of a “paradigm shift” in which people have taken over abandoned homes. Last June, under a law known as adverse possession, he filed a claim in court promising to pay taxes and homeowners’ association fees while living in the house. He kept the lawn outside mowed, and the front clean.

    Robinson spoke to The Associated Press last week while standing at the front door of the two-story, 3,200-square-foot home with a backyard pool. He declined to discuss his background or say how much money he made from book sales or seminars related to his takeover.

    He said he started his website — which describes him as “poised, measured, insightful and wise” — to keep the media and others from misleading the public about his story.

    “They think some bum off the street came and paid $15 to get a $300,000 house by filing a piece of paperwork,” Robinson said. “That is not the case. That is the sum of what happened.”

    Robinson’s website says he’s not a lawyer and isn’t offering legal advice but has done real estate research.

    Real estate experts say he’s got the law just plain wrong.

  6. rikyrah says:

    Spike Lee says black British actors get ahead because they “put the work in”
    Published On February 15, 2015
    Reported by Liku Zelleke

    Director Spike Lee is back and this time he’s brought us “Da Sweet Blood of Jesus,” a film about a man who suddenly discovers he has a thirst for blood. The lead-lady role is played by British actress Zaraah Abrahams who says it is “the role of a lifetime.”

    Lee sat down with to talk about his decision to cast a British actor in the lead role of a “Spike Lee Joint.” He talked about how it has become more common for black British actors to land major lead roles in Hollywood – David Oyelowo, Carmen Ejogo, Lupita Nyong’o, Chewitel Ejiofor, Idris Elba and Gugu Mbatha-Raw.

    Lee said, “They get their chops on stage, so their theater game is tight. Here in America, they’re not doing the work; you gotta put the work in. You gotta take class; same thing with music. People do a music video and think that means that they know how to perform onstage in front of a live audience; it’s two separate things.”

    Lee next moved onto another topic, that of black actors and directors being snubbed at this year’s Academy Award nominations.

    He said, “Here’s the message in my opinion: the message is not in the nominations, the message is in the diversity, the lack of diversity in the voting members for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. I know we have a great president now, an African-American woman, Cheryl Boone Isaacs who is committed to get the numbers up. But that’s not something that’s going to be done right away. Even without the diversity, the Academy is very old. They need more diversity of age. They need some young-bloods in there.”

    Lee has been nominated twice for the Awards – for Best Original Screenplay for “Do the Right Thing” in 1990 and for Best Documentary Feature for “4 Little Girls” in 1998.

    Viewers can watch “Da Sweet Blood of Jesus” on Vimeo on Demand and in limited theaters across the country.

  7. rikyrah says:

    The Associated Press ✔ @AP
    “Fifty Shades of Grey” whips up stunning $81.7 million weekend at box office and even bigger results abroad
    3:01 PM – 15 Feb 2015

  8. Ametia says:


    Classic scenario of a horror movie

  9. vitaminlover says:

    Belated Happy Valentines Day, ladies! Hope everyone’s was terrific.

  10. rikyrah says:

    Lawmaker Opposes Education Funding Because It Would Go To ‘Blacks’ Who Get ‘Welfare Crazy Checks’
    FEBRUARY 15, 2015 AT 11:52 AM

    A Mississippi state lawmaker said he opposed putting more money into elementary schools because he came from a town where “all the blacks are getting food stamps and what I call ‘welfare crazy checks.’ They don’t work.”

    In an interview with the Clarion-Ledger regarding education funding, state Rep. Gene Alday (R) stated his opposition to a push to increase funding to improve elementary school reading scores. Alday implied that increasing education funding for children in black families would be pointless.

    Alday continued, saying that when he was mayor of Walls, MS, that the times he’d gone to the emergency room had taken a long time. “I laid in there for hours because they (blacks) were in there being treated for gunshots,” he told the newspaper.

    At issue is something called Mississippi’s “third grade reading gate,” a measure passed in 2013, which won’t allow students to advance to fourth grade if they can’t read proficiently. A survey of Mississippi’s school superintendents estimated that about 28 percent of the state’s third graders would have to repeat a grade because they couldn’t pass the reading proficiency exams.

  11. rikyrah says:

    Boehner: I Didn’t Want ‘Interference’ From Obama In Netanyahu Speech
    FEBRUARY 15, 2015, 10:03 AM EST

    “Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace on Sunday quizzed House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) on his decision to invite Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak before Congress.

    Boehner invited Netanyahu without consulting the White House, leading numerous congressional Democrats to boycott the speech.

    “Haven’t you taken one of the few bipartisan issues in this country — support for Israel — and turned it into a political football?” Wallace asked.

    “I have not. The fact is that we had every right to do what we did,” Boehner responded. “I wanted the prime minister to come here. There’s a serious threat facing the world. And radical Islamic terrorists are not going to go away.”

    “And then when it comes to the threat of Iran having a nuclear weapon, these are important messages that the Congress needs to here and the American people need to hear,” the speaker continued. “And I believe that Prime Minister Netanyahu is the perfect person to deliver the message of how serious this threat is.”

    Wallace then pointed out that Boehner asked Ron Dermer, Israel’s ambassador to the U.S., not to tell the White House about the joint meeting with Netanyahu.

    “Why would you do that?” Wallace asked.

    “Because I wanted to make sure that there was no interference. There’s no secret here in Washington about the animosity that this White House has for Prime Minister Netanyahu. I frankly didn’t want that getting in the way, quashing what I thought was a real opportunity,” Boehner responded.

  12. rikyrah says:

    sfpelosi @sfpelosi
    ALL @HouseDemocrats cosponsored a clean bill to #fundDHS. It can pass & be law within hours. No GOP excuses – #DontShutDownOurSecurity
    9:33 AM – 15 Feb 2015

    • Ametia says:

      How are yu gonna roll up into someone’s private home and shoot not one, but THREE people in said residence EXECUTION-STYLE and claim it was just over a parking space.


  13. rikyrah says:

    Obama meets with 10 unsuspecting students for hourlong roundtable
    February 13, 2015 1 Comment
    Victor Xu

    Rio LaVigne ’15 signed up to meet several White House officials after the morning session of today’s cybersecurity summit. She did not, however, expect to meet President Barack Obama.
    Earlier this week, a group of 10 students with interests in cybersecurity was chosen by various Stanford professors and academics to potentially attend a roundtable meeting with “senior White House officials.” It was not until yesterday afternoon that the meeting was confirmed. And it was not until after Obama’s speech, in a back room of Memorial Auditorium, that the students figured out that they might be meeting the president.

    “We walked into the room and pretty quickly noticed there was a nametag in front of every seat except one,” LaVigne said. “The table’s a horseshoe shape, and the one seat that was missing was the one in the very back in the center. It was like, ‘Hmm, okay. That’s interesting. I wonder who’s going to sit there. Someone who doesn’t need a nametag?’”

    The first people to enter the room were Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett, Homeland Security Advisor Lisa Monaco and National Security Advisor Susan Rice. The three officials started a conversation with the students, and after several minutes, Obama entered the room.

    “I had a pretty visceral reaction,” said Patrick Cirenza ’15, who also attended the meeting.
    The students, Obama and the White House officials spoke on a wide range of topics for approximately one hour. Obama began by addressing sexual assault on college campuses and expressed his support for cultural change on campuses and better awareness.

    They then talked about issues of cybersecurity and national security, followed by an open discussion on any topic the students wanted. Trey Deitch ’15, a computer science major who has had a long-time interest in network security, spoke with Obama about his view of cyberattacks.

  14. rikyrah says:

    everytime I see pictures of them, it breaks my heart.

    they were MURDERED because of who they were.


  15. Attention folks!

    Please call 858-573-6500 & speak out abt @fox5sandiego news station using a photo of Potus as suspect in rape case.

    San Diego Fox News station uses picture of Obama as suspect in rape case.

  16. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning Everyone

  17. Happy Sunday, everyone!

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