Monday Open Thread | LTD & Jeffrey Osborne Week

Happy Monday, Everyone. This week’s featured artists are LTD FEAT-Jeffrey Osborne. We’re going to slow it down a bit this week with some romantic ballads.

Can you handle it? LOL


L.T.D. is an American R&B/funk band best known for their 1977 hit single, “(Every Time I Turn Around) Back in Love Again” and “Holding On (When Love Is Gone)”, as well as their many ballads, such as “Love Ballad”, “We Both Deserve Each Other’s Love”, and “Where Did We Go Wrong?”.

L.T.D. (which stands for Love, Togetherness, and Devotion), was formed in Greensboro, North Carolina, in 1968, when Arthur “Lorenzo” Carnegie (alto and tenor saxes, flute, guitar), Jake Riley (trombone) Carle Wayne Vickers (trumpet, flute, soprano sax) and Abraham “Onion” Miller (tenor sax, vocals), who had been working as members of the 15 piece “Fantastic Soul Men Orchestra” backing the ever popular duo of Sam & Dave, along with Jimmy “J.D.” Davis (keyboards, vocals), formed their own band named Love Men Ltd. Then they drove to New York City, in a car that they purchased together (a 1956 Chevy), and lived in the Hamilton Heights section of Harlem on 149th and Broadway, where Toby Wynn (baritone sax) joined them. While performing on a gig in Providence, Rhode Island, Jeffrey Osborne (drums, lead vocals) was recruited by them.

After two years in New York, they drove two cars and a trailer to Los Angeles, California, where Jeffrey’s brother, Billy Osborne (organ, drums, keyboards, co-lead vocals), Celeste Cole (vocals), Henry E. Davis (bass, vocals) and Robert Santiel (congas, percussion) joined them. 1974 found them signing with A&M Records as L.T.D. (Love Togetherness & Devotion). In 1976, Johnny McGhee (guitar) joined the band. Jeffrey was moved out front as the lead vocalist, with Melvin Webb taking over on drums in 1977. Webb was replaced by Alvino Bennet in late 1978.

The group then went on to produce songs such as “Love Ballad”, “(Every Time I Turn Around) Back in Love Again”, “Concentrate On You”, “Holding On (When Love Is Gone)”, and many others. Soon after the band’s 1980 album Shine On, Jeffrey and Billy Osborne departed to start solo careers. Andre Ray and Leslie Wilson (formerly of New Birth) were then chosen as lead vocalists their next album Love Magic which produced two more hits, “April Love”, and “Kicking Back”. Leslie Wilson left to continue his solo career and L.T.D. stayed busy in the music industry by recording for small independent record labels, and doing their own personal music projects.

In 1999, a L.T.D. copycat band lost a federal court battle with the current three original members of L.T.D. retaining the rights, and ownership of the name L.T.D. The three original members, Arthur “Lorenzo” Carnegie (saxes,flute, guitar,vocals), Carle Wayne Vickers (trumpet,flute,saxes,vocals), Johnny McGhee (guitar, vocals), along with new members, Tresure(Mark Vincent Brown), (lead vocals,keys), Aya Iwata, (keys, vocals),Herbert Lee Woods (keys,vocals),Steve Toussaint (bass,vocals) and Tefere Hazy (drums, vocals) have been touring all over the U.S. since 1999.

Jake Riley (original trombonist), died in 2000, and James “JD” Davis (keyboards, vocals), died on May 22, 2008. Henry E. Davis died January 18, 2012 in Los Angeles, CA.

We Both Deserve Each Other’s Love


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83 Responses to Monday Open Thread | LTD & Jeffrey Osborne Week

  1. Ametia says:

    Anyone watching “The Book of Negroes” on BET right now? It’s a 6 part series.

  2. Stunning art work. Strong. Beautiful. Bold.

    epic art work

  3. rikyrah says:

    GOP eyes tax increases on low-income workers
    02/16/15 11:20 AM—UPDATED 02/16/15 12:36 PM
    By Steve Benen
    Republicans are not, strictly speaking, a party obsessed with cutting taxes. The caricature is rooted in fact, but it’s incomplete – Republicans are actually a party committed to cutting taxes on the wealthy.

    This has been an underappreciated aspect of the GOP vision for several years. Indeed, it was part of Mitt Romney’s “47 percent” problem a few years ago – the Republican presidential hopeful complained, among other things, about the millions of families who “pay no income tax.” A wide variety of GOP officeholders, candidates, and pundits have made related complains about the poor not having “skin in the game” because their tax burdens simply aren’t significant enough.

    It’s against this backdrop that Shaila Dewan reported the other day that some Republican-led states are “considering tax changes that in many cases would have the effect of cutting taxes on the rich and raising them on the poor.”
    Conservatives are known for hating taxes but particularly hate income taxes, which they say have a greater dampening effect on growth. Of the 10 or so Republican governors who have proposed tax increases, nearly all have called for increases in consumption taxes, which hit the poor and middle class harder than the rich.

    Favorite targets for the new taxes include gas, e-cigarettes, and goods and services in general…. At the same time, some of those governors – most notably Mr. LePage, Nikki R. Haley of South Carolina and John R. Kasich of Ohio – have proposed significant cuts to their state income tax. They say that tax policies that encourage business growth provide more jobs and economic benefits for everyone.
    Kansas has already experimented with shifting tax burdens downward – away from the wealthy and towards those with lower incomes – and the results have been pretty disastrous.

    As an economic matter, this GOP approach is discredited nonsense. As a political matter, I’m not sure how Republican politicians are going to be able to sell, “We want to ask less of the wealthy and more from the poor.”

  4. rikyrah says:

    Anti-healthcare Supreme Court past the point of no return
    02/16/15 03:30 PM
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    By Steve Benen
    There’s a certain irony underpinning the anti-healthcare case pending at the Supreme Court: as oral arguments in King v. Burwell draw closer, optimism among those hoping to see the lawsuit succeed is going up, even as the credibility of the case itself goes down.

    When we last checked in on the breathtakingly dumb litigation, one of the plaintiffs in the case seemed to suggest she hopes her side loses. Upon further inspection, it seems none of the plaintiffs have standing, raising the possibility that the case itself should be thrown out and reinforcing the impression that the entire ACA challenge is turning into “an absurdist comedy.”

    But given all of the latest developments, that’s really just the start. Congressional Republicans have quietly let the Supreme Court know that the justices can gut the ACA system with impunity because far-right lawmakers will step in with legislative fixes to ensure families don’t suffer. Last week, however, GOP members of Congress reversed course, accidentally telling the truth.
    When asked on Friday at a meeting with reporters, House Ways & Means Chair Paul Ryan (R-WI), a key figure overseeing U.S. health policy, said there was no desire among Republicans to tweak the law to defuse the case.

    “No,” Ryan said…. “The idea is not to make Obamacare work better,” he said, adding that the goal would be to give states more freedom “to get out of Obamacare.”
    Let’s not rush past this too quickly. If Republican justices start the fire, we now know with certainty that Republican lawmakers are content, if not eager, to simply watch the system burn. All the chatter from the GOP about the party acting quickly if consumer subsidies vanish was meaningless.

    Indeed, Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), who’s fiddled with a woeful, far-right alternative to the Affordable Care Act, recently conceded that his party wouldn’t coalesce around an official GOP plan until, at the earliest, 2017. That many families would suffer in the interim apparently wouldn’t affect the timetable. Other Republican senators have offered similar assessments.

  5. rikyrah says:

    Brownback’s Right-Wing “Experiment” Is Bankrupting Kansas. His Solution: More Radical Cuts.
    By Danny Vinik

    Last year didn’t go according to plan for Kansas Governor Sam Brownback. First, the state’s revenue collections came up far short of expectations due to huge tax cuts that he pushed through the state legislature in 2012. Those tax cuts, however, didn’t spur strong growth, as the governor projected. Then, as his policies drew national criticism, Brownback found himself in a tight reelection contest, despite Kansas’ being a very conservative state.

    Brownback survived, winning by less than 4 points. But now he’s faced with a gaping hole in the state’s budget, thanks to his tax cuts—and his new proposal to fill that hole will hurt the poorest Kansans and undermine the state’s future.

    After the 2013 fiscal year, Kansas was in good shape. It had more than $700 million in a reserve fund, equal to more than 11 percent of its spending that year ($6.1 billion). In fact, state law requires Kansas to keep its balance equal to 7.5 percent of expenses. In total that year, the budget brought in about $200 million more than the state spent.

    But then the tax cuts kicked in. Revenue in the 2014 fiscal year came in $333 million below projections—and nearly $700 million below the 2013 levels. Spending fell by around $150 million, but the state still faced a deficit of $329 million. Because the reserve fund was flush with cash, Brownback and his Republican colleagues didn’t have to making drastic cuts or hike taxes to close the shortfall. They just subtracted it from the reserve fund, leaving it with just $380 million remaining.

    In 2012, Brownback called his plan a “real live experiment” for conservative economic policy. So when Kansas announced those revenue numbers last summer, the national media took notice. At the New York Times, Josh Barro reported on the flaws in Kansas’s tax plan; it tried to exempt small-businesses from taxation, but in doing so, it also opened up a loophole that could allow many Kansans to avoid paying taxes. Remaining confident in the plan, Brownback’s administration attributed the fiscal 2014 revenue shortfall to changes in federal tax policy that incentivized people to switch their capital gains income into 2012. If that was the case, then the revenue hole was just a temporary problem, one that would disappear in the 2015 fiscal year.

    Seven months into the 2015 fiscal year, though, that problem looks anything but temporary. In November, the Kansas Legislative Research Department, which provides nonpartisan reports to Kansas legislators, as the Congressional Budget Office does for Congress, lowered its revenue estimates by $205 million, to $5.8 billon. Kansas is projected to spend $6.4 billion in this fiscal year. Even with $380 million in the reserve fund, the budget still has a $279 million gap. But it’s even worse than that. In January, Kansas’s revenue came in $42 million below projections, although the governor’s office says that $22 million of that is due to Kansans filing their taxes and receiving refunds earlier than expected. Altogether, new projections estimate the 2015 shortfall at $344 million. And since Kansas, like most state governments, by law can’t run a deficit, it has to fill that gap before the fiscal year ends on June 30.

    On Tuesday, Brownback signed legislation that would balance the budget by diverting money from other funds, particularly one for highway projects, to the general fund. It would also reduce contributions to pensions for teachers and government workers, pushing those costs into the future. It’s a deeply irresponsible budget that hides the costs of the tax cuts with short-term patches. But this is just the beginning: Kansas faces a projected $600 million budget shortfall in the 2016 fiscal year—and now there is no money in the reserve fund to cover any of it.

  6. rikyrah says:

    GOP cools on Loretta Lynch
    By Tim Devaney – 02/16/15 11:43 AM EST
    President Obama’s pick to serve as the next attorney general is having a hard time finding Republican supporters.

    To be confirmed by the Senate, attorney general nominee Loretta Lynch only needs four Republicans to support her nomination. But it is unclear where those votes will come from.

    Sen. Orrin Hatch (Utah) is the only Republican so far who has signaled his intention to vote for Lynch, though several others have spoken favorably about her.

    But many Republicans are expressing concerns about Lynch’s stance on immigration and what they suggest is a lack of “independence” from the White House.
    Lynch’s confirmation was pushed back by two weeks Thursday amid “anonymous” objections from some Republicans. But Democrats say they are dragging their feet.

    “What we’re trying to do is get an indication from her of the independence that she’s going to have from the White House,” Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) told The Hill.

    “I think [Attorney General Eric] Holder is running the Justice Department like a wing of the White House,” he added. “That’s not right, and I want her to show us that she can be independent.”

  7. rikyrah says:

    Black and Latina women scientists sometimes mistaken for janitors
    By Brigid Schulte February 6

    In a series of famous studies designed to gauge at what age stereotypes sink into young minds, elementary school students were asked to draw a scientist. Kindergarteners’ drawings in these Draw-a-Scientist tests were all over the map. But by second grade, one standard image had firmly taken root: A scientist wore a white lab coat and glasses. And he was always a white man.

    So it should perhaps come as no surprise that a new report on women of color in science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM, found that 100 percent of the 60 scientists interviewed reported experiencing bias and discrimination.

    So much so that African-American and Latina scientists said they were routinely mistaken for janitors. “I always amuse my friends with my janitor stories,” one black woman scientist said. “But it has happened, not only at weird hours.”

    More than three-fourths of the African-American women scientists surveyed – 500 in an online survey in addition to the 60 in-depth interviews – reported having to provide evidence of their competence over and over again. They tend to feel they can’t afford to make a single mistake. And more than women of any other race or ethnicity, black women were more likely to report a sense of “bleak isolation.”


    A majority of Asian-American women scientists said they get pushback when they’re assertive, and don’t conform to the more stereotypical view of being a passive, feminine “China Doll.” On biophysicist recalled her colleagues telling her after she got a grant to “go back to the kitchen” so they’d have a chance.

    And Latina women scientists are labeled “angry” or “emotional.” Some said they worked intensely to overcome the stereotype that Latinos are “lazy.” Their accomplishments were more likely to be attributed to luck. And they reported routinely being asked to do the administrative drudge work that researchers called “office housework.”

    “Several of them were actually being treated as admin, expected to fill out other people’s grant forms, coordinate other people’s meetings, and they couldn’t get out of it,” said Joan Williams, a law professor at the University of California’s Hastings College of the Law and one of the authors of the new report.

  8. rikyrah says:



    Alabama Secretary Of State: It’s Time To ‘Forgive People’ For Voter Suppression And ‘Move On’


    Just weeks ahead of the 50th anniversary of the violent clashes in Selma that led to passage of the Voting Rights Act in 1965, lawmakers introduced a bill to restore that law’s power to protect voters against discrimination. Alabama’s newly sworn in Secretary of State John Merrill told ThinkProgress at a DC conference on Wednesday that he believes the new law should not cover his state, saying it’s time to “forgive people” for past voter suppression and “move on.”

    Civil rights groups and some lawmakers are already sharing concerns that Alabama — whose racially motivated redistricting case led to the gutting of the law in the first place — is not covered by the new version of the Voting Rights Act. But Merrill said he agrees with the authors of the bill that his state should not fall under the updated coverage formula.

    “I feel good about the kind of progress that we’re making and I don’t hear a hue and cry from our local officials about us not being able to meet the needs of all of our voters throughout the entire state,” he said. “I say, at some point in time, you’ve got to forgive people. If they’ve shown they are responsible and doing things the right way and have an extended period of success, then to me that ought to indicate that the strength is there, the desire is there, and you’ve got to move on.”

    When the Supreme Court struck down a key piece of the law in the summer of 2013, the federal government lost the ability to stop discriminatory changes to voting laws before they took effect in states and counties with a legacy of racism and voter suppression. Almost immediately after the Supreme Court’s ruling, Alabama pushed through the held-up redistricting as well as a voter ID law estimated to disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of voters.

    Others say Alabama has not, as Merrill claims, demonstrated a “period of success” in protecting voting rights.

    “Alabama has a storied history of voter suppression. Although progress has been made, it is largely due to the protections granted by the landmark Voting Rights Act of 1965,”said Rep. Terri Sewell (D-AL). “We have witnessed a steady erosion of voter protections in the wake of Shelby County v. Holder that prove federal oversight is still necessary.” Sewell added that as recently as last January, courts found evidence of intentional discrimination against minority voters in Evergreen, Alabama. There, black voters were systematically photographed going to the polls as a means of voter intimidation, African Americans were improperly purged from the voter rolls using utility records, and the city’s voting map was redrawn to dilute black city council representation in the majority-black city.

    Under the new Voting Rights Act — identical to one that died in Congress last year — only voting rights violations committed over the past 15 years count toward deciding which areas get extra pre-clearance protections, and only four states would make the cut: Texas, Louisiana, Georgia and Mississippi.

  9. rikyrah says:

    The Voting Rights Act’s precarious future
    02/16/15 12:45 PM—UPDATED 02/16/15 01:31 PM
    By Steve Benen

    More than two years have passed since conservative Supreme Court justices undermined the Voting Rights Act, effectively telling members of Congress to overhaul the law in order to save it. A bipartisan group of lawmakers introduced a proposed fix, the “Voting Rights Amendment Act,” but far-right House Republicans refused to consider the conservative compromise.

    Last week, to his credit, Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) formally unveiled the same bill to be considered in the new Congress, though proponents seem to realize they face long odds. In theory, the pieces are in place for success – the VRA’s 50th anniversary is coming up, and the Republican majority, which used to support the law, could use some good p.r. on civil rights – but most of the GOP just won’t budge.

    And with this in mind, consider this unnerving report from Alice Ollstein late last week.
    Just weeks ahead of the 50th anniversary of the violent clashes in Selma that led to passage of the Voting Rights Act in 1965, lawmakers introduced a bill to restore that law’s power to protect voters against discrimination. Alabama’s newly sworn in Secretary of State John Merrill told ThinkProgress at a DC conference on Wednesday that he believes the new law should not cover his state, saying it’s time to “forgive people” for past voter suppression and “move on.”

    Civil rights groups and some lawmakers are already sharing concerns that Alabama – whose racially motivated redistricting case led to the gutting of the law in the first place – is not covered by the new version of the Voting Rights Act. But Merrill said he agrees with the authors of the bill that his state should not fall under the updated coverage formula.
    Alabama’s Secretary of State specifically told ThinkProgress, “I say, at some point in time, you’ve got to forgive people. If they’ve shown they are responsible and doing things the right way and have an extended period of success, then to me that ought to indicate that the strength is there, the desire is there, and you’ve got to move on.”

    The problem with the sentiment, no matter how sincere, is all of the recent evidence pointing in the opposite direction.

    Merrill’s argument, in effect, is the one the Supreme Court majority embraced in 2013: racially discriminatory voter-suppression laws are a thing of the past. And that might even seem compelling if we hadn’t seen what Republican state policymakers did in the immediate aftermath of the high court’s ruling: states quickly enacted new voting restrictions, many of which disproportionately affected minority communities.

    That includes Alabama, by the way, which “pushed through … a voter ID law estimated to disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of voters” soon after the Supreme Court gutted the VRA.

    We have to “forgive people” and “move on”? The flip side to this argument is the advocates of voting rights and civil rights might be more than happy to “forgive people” and “move on” just as soon as the right stops imposing new voting restrictions without cause.

  10. rikyrah says:

    Boehner, GOP poised to gut Homeland Security funding
    02/16/15 08:00 AM—UPDATED 02/16/15 11:21 AM
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    By Steve Benen
    As a result of a truly ridiculous budget scheme congressional Republicans cooked up for themselves, current funding for the Department of Homeland Security will be exhausted literally next week. John Harwood noted yesterday that avoiding a shutdown is a “rock-bottom, de minimis test of GOP governance.”

    It is a test Republicans are poised to fail on purpose.
    House Speaker John Boehner said Sunday he’s “certainly” willing to allow funding for the Department of Homeland Security to lapse in less than two weeks.

    The Ohio Republican called on Senate Democrats to act on funding legislation the House passed earlier this year, indicating that his chamber won’t produce an alternative measure.
    The beleaguered Speaker’s feeble talking point is, “The House has acted. We’ve done our job.” Boehner surely knows his argument is absurd – the lower chamber passed a right-wing bill that House Republicans knew couldn’t pass the Senate and couldn’t earn President Obama’s signature. In other words, the GOP majority “acted” by passing a bill that everyone knew was doomed to fail.

    Boehner went on to say the Republican-led House and Republican-led Senate can’t fund Homeland Security because of Democrats “are the ones putting us in this precarious position,” which really is as pitiful as it sounds.

    In the immediate aftermath of terrorist violence in Paris last month, the Speaker reassured Americans, saying, “I don’t believe that the funding of the [Department of Homeland Security] is in fact at risk.” As of yesterday, the hapless Republican leader appears to now believe the exact opposite.

    Of course, there’s still plenty of time for lawmakers to work something out, right? Well, it’s a funny story.

    The funding deadline is next week, which would suggest this week is the critical juncture for real work to get done, but as it turns out, congressional Republicans are taking this week off. You see, lawmakers worked six abbreviated work weeks, punctuated with four- and five-day weekends, in a row. Naturally, it was time for a week off, despite a looming deadline.

    For what it’s worth, while some policy disputes are hard to solve, this one’s easy. Republicans and Democrats, the White House and Congress, all agree on Homeland Security funding levels. All Congress has to do is provide the agency with the agreed upon resources. That’s what the president wants; it’s what the Senate wants; it’s what House Democrats want; and according to at least one House Republican, a bipartisan majority in both chambers could pass a “clean,” straightforward funding bill that would end all of this nonsense.

  11. rikyrah says:

    For those in Chicago:

    Mr. Civil Rights: Thurgood Marshall and the NAACP

    will view on PBS, this Friday, 2/20/2015, at 10:30 PM CST

  12. rikyrah says:

    another MEDIA ALERT:

    Coming to Independent Lens: Through a Lens Darkly

    The first documentary to explore the role of photography in shaping the identity, aspirations, and social emergence of African Americans from slavery to the present, Through a Lens Darkly: Black Photographers and the Emergence of a People probes the recesses of American history through images that have been suppressed, forgotten, and lost.

    Bringing to light the hidden and unknown photos shot by both professional and vernacular African American photographers, the film opens a window into the lives of black families, whose experiences and perspectives are often missing from the traditional historical canon. African Americans historically embraced the medium as a way to subvert popular stereotypes as far back as the Civil War era, with Frederick Douglass photographed in a suit and black soldiers posing proudly in their uniforms. These images show a much more complex and nuanced view of American culture and its founding ideals.

    Inspired by the book Reflections in Black by photo historian Deborah Willis, the film features the works of esteemed photographic artists Carrie Mae Weems, Lorna Simpson, Anthony Barboza, Hank Willis Thomas, Coco Fusco, Clarissa Sligh, James Van Der Zee, Gordon Parks, and many others.

  13. rikyrah says:

    Speaking of PBS Documentaries, just recorded one last night called -Spies of Mississippi, about the Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission. A Government entity set up to sabotage the Civil Rights Movement. This was an Independent Lens production. The State Sovereignty Commission spies were the ones who fed the KKK the license plate and make/model of the car of Schewerner, Chaney, Goodman. The Sovereignty Commission had the exact location of their dead bodies.

    • Kathleen says:

      I googled to see if the “Sovereignty” Commission was included in the prosecution’s case, but it appears it walked away scott free. I remember that case vividly because I was in high school at that time, but for some reason this is the first time I’ve let myself experience my sadness and rage over the murder of these brave young men.

      Several of my high school friends went to Greenwood, MS in the summer of 1965 to either help residents vote or support literacy programs (I honestly don’t remember exactly what they supported). All of those people, young and old, were (and are) so very brave and it touches my heart especially to see the pictures of those 3 young men.

  14. Little dancer killing it

  15. rikyrah says:

    FBI investigates claim suspects in 1946 Georgia mass lynching may be alive

    Federal authorities look into notorious Moore’s Ford Bridge deaths of four African Americans which have long been linked to the Ku Klux Klan
    Monday 16 February 2015 13.57 EST

    US authorities are investigating whether some of those responsible for one of the American south’s most notorious mass lynchings are still alive, in an attempt to finally bring prosecutions over the brutal unsolved killings.

    FBI agents have questioned a man in Georgia about the Moore’s Ford Bridge lynching of 1946, the man told the Guardian. The man was among several in their 80s and 90s named in connection with the incident on a list given to the US Department of Justice by civil rights activists.

    Speaking at his home in Monroe, 10 miles west of the lynching site, Charlie Peppers denied taking part in the killings of four African Americans who were tied up and shot 60 times by a white mob.

    “Heck no,” said Peppers, 86, when asked if he was involved. “Back when all that happened, I didn’t even know where Moore’s Ford was.” Peppers, who was 18 at the time of the lynching, said: “The blacks are blaming people that didn’t even know what happened back then.”Jim Crow lynchings more widespread than first thought, report concludes

    A report by the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) published last week found at least 700 more lynchings than had previously been recorded in southern states, renewing calls from campaigners for any suspects still at large to be brought to justice before it is too late.

  16. rikyrah says:

    I already bought it at Amazon

    Why aren’t PBS stations airing the new Thurgood Marshall documentary in prime time slots?

    Martin Luther King, Jr. is the face of the civil rights movement, but the architect who tore down the framework of legalized discrimination, Thurgood Marshall, is often overlooked except, perhaps, during Black History Month despite his impact on American history.

    That’s why filmmaker Mick Caouette made “Mr. Civil Rights,” a documentary about Marshall’s early life, the time period before he successfully challenged separate public schools for black and white students in the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case, Brown v. Board of Education.

    Caouette said he first set out to do a story about civil rights activist and former NAACP executive director Roy Wilkins. But Roger Wilkins, Roy’s nephew and past publisher of The Crisis Magazine, thought Marshall made for a more interesting character study.

    “He’s been largely forgotten and I couldn’t understand why that was,” said Caouette recalling his conversation with the younger Wilkins. “I wanted to do something that would bring his name back to the forefront again. I found there was little on this part of his life, and I wanted to expose the courage of this part of his life and remind people of who he was.”

    “Mr. Civil Rights” was completed more than a year ago, but unfortunately, many public broadcasting stations have yet to air it. Of the more than 351 public television stations that receive support from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting; “Mr. Civil Rights” has aired on about 200 of them, Caouette said.

    The film was scheduled to be shown in 115 cities on Martin Luther King’s birthday, including Marshall’s hometown. WHUT at Howard University is also airing the film. But WETA, which broadcasts in Washington, D.C. have has not aired the film, and has no plans to at this time.

    Caouette said that some public broadcasting stations, like WETA, may be waiting to air the documentary during black history month.

    “They want to pigeonhole it into a black history day or a month. But that’s a little disappointing to me because this is everybody’s history,” Caouette added. “Thurgood Marshall is American history. My main complaint is not even that PBS has ignored it, or if it is even conscious, but the film has been placed in the ‘Black History’ mold, when in fact it is all of our history, black or white, good or bad.”

    The stations that have aired the film often do so at odd times, added Caouette. Maryland Public Television, which broadcasts in Marshall’s hometown of Baltimore, has scheduled the film to air just three times next month: Feb. 1 at 11 p.m. and Feb. 2 at 2 a.m. and 5 a.m.

    “Schedules are created months in advance. I found this show at a late date in the creation of the February schedule and wanted to play it, but the prime time slots were already filled,” said Zvi Shoubin, managing director for program services at Maryland Public Television. It is scheduled at 11pm after Masterpiece on Sunday which is a very good lead-in. I will schedule it on MPT2 in the future in prime time. “

    Shoubin said the documentary will air in prime time slots on the station’s digital channel, MPT2, which features lifestyle and cultural content as well as encore productions from the station’s primary channel.

    “Mr. Civil Rights” is not on WETA’s broadcast schedule for the months of January or February (Black History Month), but that doesn’t mean the station won’t air it, a spokeswoman said this week. She said that she was unaware of the film, which is being distributed by American Public Television.

    Caouette is encouraging supporters to write and call public TV stations, including WETA, to encourage them to air the film.

    The documentary, which can be purchased through the PBS store or, is the first attempt on film to delve into Marshall’s childhood growing up in Baltimore, his schooling and highlights his relationship with Charles Hamilton Houston, a law professor at Howard University in Washington, D.C. where Marshall studied. Houston became Marshall’s mentor, and eventually, his contemporary.

    The film was completed long before recent racial tensions in Ferguson, Missouri, New York and other parts of the country, but “Mr. Civil Rights” shows how relevant Marshall’s work still is, and the work that’s left to be done, Caouette said.

    “Recent events show that the issues he worked on are still as relevant as ever,” Caouette said. “The issues of race and racism aren’t going away. It may be more subtle now, but they are still very much there.”

    To see the film in your area, please contact your local PBS affiliate and ask when the station will air the documentary.

  17. rikyrah says:


    “The Book of Negroes” miniseries starts tonight on BET!

  18. rikyrah says:


    Everyone, remember the Stevie Wonder tribute “Songs in the Key of Life” tribute tonight on CBS.

  19. rikyrah says:

    One of my absolutely favorite headlines from November 5, 2008
    suntimes_mr president

  20. rikyrah says:

    President Walker Primer: 4 things you should know about Scott Walker before it’s too late
    February 15, 2015 by WCMC

    So … Scott Walker is all but officially running for president, and the country is getting a look at a man whom we residents of Wisconsin have been living with since before he became governor. While the national press has focused on the policies and conservative ideology that Walker has imposed on our state, these don’t define the man or explain the mayhem he has caused here.

    The massive protests against Walker in 2011 began with “Act 10,” which stripped public employee unions of almost all of their rights and power. Walker loves to leave the story there and depicts ongoing opposition to him as a fight between him and the unions. It’s a narrative that sells well to his donors and to a national press eager for narrative simplicity.

    But Act 10 was only a triggering event, not the sole or even primary motivation of Walker’s opponents. While much of the opposition to Walker centers around his policies, there is more to it than that. It is the way he implements these policies, the way he deals with opposition, and the way he rewards his allies that make Walker not just divisive, but frightening. Even conservatives who share Walker’s ideology should distrust him, and dread the prospect of him becoming president.

    Why? Here is a brief primer on Scott Walker, drawn from what we have learned about him first-hand here in Wisconsin. These are things that the rest of the country should know in order to avoid learning the same lessons the hard way—on a national and international platform of the presidency.

  21. rikyrah says:

    from NYT Opinion Pages

    George Washington, Slave Catcher

    AMID the car and mattress sales that serve as markers for Presidents’ Day, Black History Month reminds Americans to focus on our common history. In 1926, the African-American historian Carter G. Woodson introduced Negro History Week as a commemoration built around the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. Now February serves as a point of collision between presidential celebration and marginalized black history.

    While Lincoln’s role in ending slavery is understood to have been more nuanced than his reputation as the great emancipator would suggest, it has taken longer for us to replace stories about cherry trees and false teeth with narratives about George Washington’s slaveholding.

    When he was 11 years old, Washington inherited 10 slaves from his father’s estate. He continued to acquire slaves — some through the death of family members and others through direct purchase. Washington’s cache of enslaved people peaked in 1759 when he married the wealthy widow Martha Dandridge Custis. His new wife brought more than 80 slaves to the estate at Mount Vernon. On the eve of the American Revolution, nearly 150 souls were counted as part of the property there.

    In 1789, Washington became the first president of the United States, a planter president who used and sanctioned black slavery. Washington needed slave labor to maintain his wealth, his lifestyle and his reputation. As he aged, Washington flirted with attempts to extricate himself from the murderous institution — “to get quit of Negroes,” as he famously wrote in 1778. But he never did.

    During the president’s two terms in office, the Washingtons relocated first to New York and then to Philadelphia. Although slavery had steadily declined in the North, the Washingtons decided that they could not live without it. Once settled in Philadelphia, Washington encountered his first roadblock to slave ownership in the region — Pennsylvania’s Gradual Abolition Act of 1780.

    The act began dismantling slavery, eventually releasing people from bondage after their 28th birthdays. Under the law, any slave who entered Pennsylvania with an owner and lived in the state for longer than six months would be set free automatically. This presented a problem for the new president.

    Washington developed a canny strategy that would protect his property and allow him to avoid public scrutiny. Every six months, the president’s slaves would travel back to Mount Vernon or would journey with Mrs. Washington outside the boundaries of the state. In essence, the Washingtons reset the clock. The president was secretive when writing to his personal secretary Tobias Lear in 1791: “I request that these Sentiments and this advise may be known to none but yourself & Mrs. Washington.”

    The president went on to support policies that would protect slave owners who had invested money in black lives. In 1793, Washington signed the first fugitive slave law, which allowed fugitives to be seized in any state, tried and returned to their owners. Anyone who harbored or assisted a fugitive faced a $500 penalty and possible imprisonment.

    Washington almost made it through his two terms in office without a major incident involving his slave ownership. On a spring evening in May of 1796, though, Ona Judge, the Washingtons’ 22-year-old slave woman, slipped away from the president’s house in Philadelphia. At 15, she had joined the Washingtons on their tour of Northern living. She was among a small cohort of nine slaves who lived with the president and his family in Philadelphia. Judge was Martha Washington’s first attendant; she took care of Mrs. Washington’s personal needs.

    What prompted Judge’s decision to bolt was Martha Washington’s plan to give Judge away as a wedding gift to her granddaughter. Judge fled Philadelphia for Portsmouth, N.H., a city with 360 free black people, and virtually no slaves. Within a few months of her arrival, Judge married Jack Staines, a free black sailor, with whom she had three children. Judge and her offspring were vulnerable to slave catchers. They lived as free people, but legally belonged to Martha Washington.

    Washington and his agents pursued Judge for three years, dispatching friends, officials and relatives to find and recapture her. Twelve weeks before his death, Washington was still actively pursuing her, but with the help of close allies, Judge managed to elude his slave-catching grasp.

    George Washington died on Dec. 14, 1799. At the time of his death, 318 enslaved people lived at Mount Vernon and fewer than half of them belonged to the former president. Washington’s will called for the emancipation of his slaves following the death of his wife. He completed in death what he had been unwilling to do while living, an act made easier because he had no biological children expecting an inheritance. Martha Washington lived until 1802 and upon her death all of her human property went to her inheritors. She emancipated no one.

    When asked by a reporter if she had regrets about leaving the Washingtons, Judge responded, “No, I am free, and have, I trust, been made a child of God by the means.” Ona Judge died on Feb. 25, 1848. She has earned a salute during the month of February.

    Erica Armstrong Dunbar, an associate professor of black studies and history at the University of Delaware, is the author of “A Fragile Freedom: African American Women and Emancipation in the Antebellum City.”

  22. rikyrah says:

    Wisconsin Sees Presidential Ploy in Walker’s Push for University Cuts

    By JULIE BOSMAN FEB. 16, 2015

    MADISON, Wis. — Atop a steep hill on the University of Wisconsin campus is a granite boulder affixed with a bronze plaque commemorating the university system’s lofty mission: to benefit the entire state by promoting public service and a search for truth.

    Summed up in one phrase — “the boundaries of the university are the boundaries of the state” — the mission statement, known as the Wisconsin Idea, has been cherished by educators and graduates for a century. So whenGov. Scott Walker, a second-term Republican, presented a budget this month proposing to delete some of its most soaring passages, as well as to sharply cut state aid to the system, he ignited a furious backlash that crossed party and regional lines.

    “We were really upset about it,” said Tony Sumnicht, the student body president at the University of Wisconsin, River Falls, a small college in the western part of the state, echoing a sentiment voiced by some Republican lawmakers. “The Wisconsin Idea is the philosophy that during our years in college we live and learn by.”

    Mr. Walker hastily backtracked, attributing the proposed changes — which included inserting a call “to meet the state’s work-force needs” — to a “drafting error” by aides.

    But to many Wisconsinites, it appeared that this was no mistake, and that the governor, who was re-elected in November, was intentionally sending a pugnacious message to an audience beyond the boundaries of his state: the conservative caucus voters of neighboring Iowa, the first stop in the presidential sweepstakes.

  23. Ametia says:


  24. My tweet made it into the Virginia Beach SunTimes

    Twitter gets political on Presidents’ Day

    Feb. 16 is Presidents’ Day so naturally social media is buzzing with chatter about everything from President Barack Obama to the forefathers. Here’s what Twitter had to say about Presidents’ Day.

  25. Rikyrah, look what I found. I’m going to put this in your Gladys Knight thread too.

  26. yahtzeebutterfly says:


    Today in Black History for February 16th:

    1970 – Joe Frazier knocks out Jimmy Ellis
    Joe Frazier knocked out Jimmy Ellis in the second round of their New York fight and became the world heavyweight boxing champion.

    1957 – Actor Levar Burton born
    Actor Levar Burton was born in Landsthul, Germany. Burton won fame for his acting in the television movie “roots,” which was based on the novel by Alex Haley. He became known once more in the 1980s and 1990s for his recurring role in the “Star Trek: Next Generation” series and movies.

    1951 – New York City Council passes bill prohibiting racial discrimination
    New York City Council passed bill prohibiting racial discrimination in city-assisted housing developments.

    1923 – Bessie Smith’s First Recording
    On this day Bessie Smith makes her first recording, “Down Hearted Blues,” which sells 800,000 copies for Columbia Records.

    Here is her recording of “Down Hearted Blues” :

  27. yahtzeebutterfly says:

    Maj. General Marclite J. Harris was born on this day in 1943. From Wikipedia:

    Major General Marcelite J. Harris (born January 16, 1943, Houston, Texas) became the first African-American female general officer of the United States Air Force. She was born Marcelite Jordan to Cecil O’Neal Jordan and Marcelite Terrill Jordan, Sr.

    Marcelite Jordan graduated from Spelman College, earning her B.A. in speech and drama in 1964. She was commissioned through Officer Training School, Lackland Air Force Base, Texas in 1965 and held a variety of assignments in the Air Force. Marcelite Harris’s career included many “firsts”, as she was the first female aircraft maintenance officer, one of the first two female air officers commanding at the United States Air Force Academy, and the Air Force’s first female Director of Maintenance.

    She served as a White House social aide during the Carter administration.
    Her service medals and decorations include the Bronze Star, the Presidential Unit Citation, and the Vietnam Service Medal. Harris retired as a major general in 1997, the highest ranking female officer in the Air Force and the Nation’s highest ranking African American woman in the Department of Defense.

    Upon retirement from the Air Force, Harris served NASA as the Florida Site Director and Logistics Process Owner for United Space Alliance, the company managing the Nation’s Shuttle Program. Besides her Spelman B.A., she holds a B.S. in Business Management from the University of Maryland University College. In 1999, Harris was awarded an Honorary Doctorate Degree from Spelman College. Mrs. Harris is a member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority.

  28. rikyrah says:

    McConnell, after his no-shutdowns pledge, quickly finds himself boxed in
    By Paul Kane February 13

    Less than six weeks on his powerful Capitol Hill perch, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is on the verge of watching one of his most important promises — to never again shut down the government — go up in smoke.

    Lawmakers on Friday began a 10-day hiatus, leaving them just four days when they return to pass funding for the Department of Homeland Security to avoid the shutdown of a key federal agency. The DHS budget fight follows an effort among GOP conservatives to roll back President Obama’s recent executive orders on immigration.

  29. rikyrah says:

    Republican majorities struggle to get Congress working
    February 15, 2015, 9:00 a.m.

    After six weeks in session and 139 roll call votes in a House and Senate that feature some of the largest Republican majorities in generations, one of the most telling statistics from the new Congress is this: President Obama’s veto threats outnumber the bills Congress has been able to send him.

    When Republicans swept into power last November, they promised a new era of productivity and discipline that would break four years of gridlock. “America’s New Congress,” they called it.

    But far from striking a bold contrast with the last two terms of stalemate, congressional Republicans have quickly run into familiar obstacles, including partisan paralysis and party infighting.

    Friday, as members of Congress rushed to leave town on a bitterly cold morning, Republicans celebrated their most visible accomplishment to date: sending the Keystone XL pipeline bill to Obama’s desk for his expected veto

  30. rikyrah says:

    Churchgoing teen killed by cops in shootout after killing parents, sister over computer use
    16 FEB 2015 AT 07:20 ET

    A Kentucky teen suspected in the shooting deaths of his parents and younger sister was killed Saturday morning in a shootout with police in Maryland.

    Police said 16-year-old Jason Hendrix opened fire on officers, wounding one, in Baltimore County after he crashed during a pursuit.

    Officers then fatally shot the teen, who police said was carrying with him a 9mm semiautomatic handgun, two .38-caliber pistols, a double-barreled shotgun and backpack “completely full of ammo.”

  31. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone :)

  32. Ametia says:

    …more snow..

  33. Ametia says:

    Happy Monday, Everyone! :-)

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