Thursday Open Thread | Cicely Tyson Week

The many faces of Cicey Tyson on the cover of Ebony Magazine







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58 Responses to Thursday Open Thread | Cicely Tyson Week

  1. rikyrah says:

    The pictures are beautiful

    Young, Black and Victorian: Wonderful photographs of Victorian women of color

    Here are some photographs of Victorian women of color that date from 1860 to 1901. Unfortunately, a lot of these photographs have no names attached to the women posed in the photographs.

    I’d love to know the stories behind each photo. What each woman’s life was like. Sadly, we’ll probably never know.

  2. rikyrah says:

    Some top Democrats are alarmed about Clinton’s readiness for a campaign

    By Philip Rucker and Paul Kane March 11
    Senior Democrats are increasingly worried that Hillary Rodham Clinton is not ready to run for president, fearing that the clumsy and insular handling of the nine-day fracas over her private e-mails was a warning sign about the campaign expected to launch next month.

    Few Democrats believe that the revelations about her un­or­tho­dox e-mail practices as secretary of state are a substantive issue that would damage Clinton with voters, and many said she performed adequately in a Tuesday news conference defending herself.

  3. Ametia says:


    3-12-15 @ 6:52 p.m. CT

  4. eliihass says:

    Again, why and how does it make sense that there’s unending outrage when a police man is grazed by a bullet, yet shrugs and nonchalance when unarmed black kids are murdered by police in broad daylight?

    This so-called shooting incident last night will be used to target, witch-hunt and harass black people the police have always had in their crosshairs. This gives them carte blanche to go for it.

    This county police chief is even more evil and racist than the Jackson.

    • Ametia says:

      the racist, extorting, racketeering, terrorist cops have been revealed, and they’re doing what COWARDS do, play the VICTIM, to get the spotlight off that DOJ report and all those resignations

  5. rikyrah says:

    ramaxe @ramaxe1965

    Bibi Using Congressional Address In New Campaign Ad, Just As Critics Warned – Democratic Underground

  6. rikyrah says:

    PragmaticObotsUnite @PragObots

    Check out @RodnerFigueroa’s “apology” to First Lady Michelle Obama. He’s trying to play victim! … #BlackTwitter

    • eliihass says:

      Yup. There you have it. They respect her husband, voted for him, think he’s a great man, but Mrs Obama is disrespected, disparaged and dehumanized just like every black woman who won’t distort her beautiful, God-given natural features to make her look more white and therefore more acceptable to the contrived standard of beauty.

      This pos also invokes being gay to argue that he couldn’t possibly be racist. Please, let me at the fool.

  7. rikyrah says:

    Let’s Talk Privilege: What It Is, What It Isn’t, and Why You Have It

    Spandan Chakrabarti | March 11, 2015

    There is perhaps not a single term more misused in politics or in social discussions about issues than ‘privilege’. Everyone is out to prove that they don’t have privilege, and that every privilege has an equal and opposite counterpoint on the scale. Terms like “reverse racism”, “men’s rights”, “straight pride” – insofar as they are used as a counter to their obvious social justice targets – are mere instances of a very endemic misunderstanding of privilege.

    Too many people seem to view the word ‘privilege’ and start thinking that it’s a personal offense against them. “Oh you’re saying I didn’t work hard to get where I am because I’m white?” “You think I’ve never had safety concerns just because I’m a man?” “You’re saying my relationship is easy because I’m straight?”

    No, that’s not what we’re saying at all. That’s the first and most common misunderstanding about privilege: it isn’t about specific individuals never having tough luck; it’s about a systemic advantage (or disadvantage) that has nothing to do with what one does, but what one is. The systemic advantages and disadvantages can be written into law, but they are most often deeply rooted into social behaviors we engage in without even thinking.

    So white privilege isn’t about whether one white person has worked for every penny he’s got or has had to endure hardships. It’s about the fact that being white in and of itself improved the chances that his hard work will pay off. It’s about the fact that being white in and of itself reduced his chances to be shot and killed by a police officer or just shot and killed period when he was 17, or being stopped and frisked, or being convicted of a crime he didn’t commit.

    Is that privilege? After all, it seems that in civil society, one ought to be able to count on the basic protections against being shot while unarmed, against being stopped by law enforcement without suspicion of illegal activity or to not be convicted of crimes you didn’t commit. That sounds like the basic rights of an individual along with the basic guarantee of fairness. Why should that be considered privilege?

    Because not everyone has that luxury. Privilege is the result of an unequal system. The whole concept of privilege rises from the truth that even in a country like ours that values fairness and equal opportunity, the playing field is horrendously unequal.

    The fact that I can walk down the street at night without much caring to look back or pray every moment is the result of two privileges I enjoy: one, I’m a man. As a non-feminine male, I don’t have to worry about being raped. That is not to say rape never happens to a man, but systematically women are the primary victims. The second reason I can do so is because I live in a relatively safe neighborhood. Again, shootings happen in safe neighborhoods too, but we are not systematically at risk.

  8. Ametia says:


    The Cookie Conundrum: Is ‘Empire’ Wrong to Portray Blacks as Criminals?

    Critics who claim Empire portrays the worst in black stereotypes forget that black characters are free to be as flawed as any other human beings.

    Empire is over-the-top. It’s melodramatic. It can be laughably cheesy. And it’s one of the most watchable shows on TV.


    When white folks complain about this show and its stereotypes, it’s because it was written and produced by a black man.

    Heaven forbid we get to write and portray ourselves as anything other than what white folks proclaim we should be!

    Blacks should stick to writing and acting out the perfect American life.

    Basically, they want to have that right to STEROTYPE blacks!

    • rikyrah says:

      I find the characters of Empire to be complex.

      Lucious is a complete bastard, but I love him…like I loved JR Ewing…and The Great Victor Newman…

      Cookie…..Cookie is so complex.

      Then, we have a son, who grew up in ‘that life’, and went the 180 degrees as he could (Ivy League, White wife), but then he suffers from mental ilness. Oh, I’m sorry, where have we seen Black people with mental illness being treated seriously on tv…that’s right…we haven’t.

      Then, there’s the gay son. Say what you want, but Jamal, the ‘gay one’ is the most GANGSTA of all of Lucious’ children. He didn’t grow up ‘ in dem streets’, but he ain’t never skurred.

  9. rikyrah says:

    OU Parents: Your son IS a racist.
    Mar 11, 2015 5:54am PDT by Tracker

    Dear Parents of SAE members,

    I understand all this came as a tremendous surprise to you. You think your son is a wonderful boy, and you can’t bear the thought that others might not share your view.

    we know his heart, and he is not a racist

    Yes, dear parents, he is. And he probably learned it from you and your family.

    Let me explain.

    Your son loves that song. It’s not the first time he’s sung it. He thinks it’s hilarious. He loves it because it cements his sense of belonging. He is chosen, he is worthy and others were rejected as unworthy – that makes belonging all the better. The delicious obscenity and casual cruelty underscore how wonderful he is as a member of this elite organization.

    He may have learned the song at college, but he learned the mindset at home. He learned it from casual remarks about “thugs”, “lazy welfare cheats”, “reverse racism”, and jokes about President Obama. He learned that he is special and better than other people at home. He learned it from you.

    He learned to be racist by your purchasing a house in the “right” neighborhood, going to the “right” schools – neighborhoods where there are no black people, schools with no black students. He learned to be a racist by the church you go to where there are no minority members. You wanted him to pledge SAE because of the “Southern” values. You know what that code means.

    You may be apologizing, but you’re just making excuses for him. You’ve already forgiven him, you want everyone else to as well. You think it’s extremely unjust he was expelled over a silly song. You’re thinking about suing the school.

    You are concerned about his future, you want him to have the prosperous future he deserves. Because something like racism shouldn’t hold him back. Don’t worry, it doesn’t, it wont. There will be plenty of people to help him along. Racism only holds back minorities.

    You are also concerned that you will be perceived as a racist. A few jokes, a few sarcastic cracks don’t mean you’re a racist, right? After all, there are a lot of black people in prison, on drugs, and on welfare right? The bottom line is black people shouldn’t be so sensitive. A silly song isn’t a big deal. Get over it, nobody’s actually hanging from a tree. Playing the race card is stupid.

    If your son truly wasn’t a racist, he would not sing that song. He would stand up to his fraternity and tell them it’s racist and hurtful. He would quit the fraternity rather than play along.

    Dear SAE parents – until you acknowledge your son’s racism and your own, nothing will change. But that’s not what you want, is it?

  10. rikyrah says:

    Morning Plum: How the Senate battle over Loretta Lynch will ‘make history’

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has announced that there will be a vote next week on whether to confirm Loretta Lynch as Attorney General. Roll Call’s David Hawkings has a fascinating read this morning arguing that the battle over her confirmation is poised to make history — and not, perhaps, in a way that reflects well on its actors.

    Hawkings makes the case that if Lynch is confirmed, it will come after the longest wait ever, and likely by the closest vote ever, for confirmation of a nominee for Attorney General. This all flows from the fact that many Republicans have decided to turn the battle over Lynch — who would be the first African American female AG — into one over Obama’s executive actions shielding millions of people from deportation:

    As the top federal prosecutor in Brooklyn, Lynch has earned just the sort of tough but fair reputation that’s customarily made for bipartisan smooth sailing in the Senate. But at least three-quarters of Republicans are going to oppose her anyway, mostly because of a single position she’s taken as the nominee: Obama was on solid legal ground in deferring deportations of as many as 5 million undocumented immigrants…The single biggest reason Republicans oppose Lynch is that she disagrees with them on a single matter of public policy.

    Given the nature of this opposition, Hawkings tries to gauge whether there are enough GOP Senators who might support Lynch to get her confirmed. There are the four who have already declared support for her. There are a few others who did not sign the letter to Iran’s leaders, and thus could perhaps be expected to “stand by their chamber’s historic customs” and “give the president broad leeway on Cabinet nominees.” There are a few who also voted for Eric Holder, and a few up for reelection in states carried by Obama. If Lynch gets all those votes, Hawkings calculates, that would still give her “only one more than the 14-year-old record for minimal support for an attorney general.”

  11. rikyrah says:

    Morning Plum: Rolling back the Obama presidency
    Lurking underneath the searing controversy around the GOP letter to Iranian leaders is a dynamic that will far outlast the current headlines and recriminations it has unleashed: If President Obama reaches an international deal curbing Iran’s nuclear program, all of the 2016 GOP presidential candidates will likely campaign on a pledge to cancel it.

    David Drucker reports this morning: “Vowing to cancel President Obama’s budding nuclear deal with Iran is rapidly becoming a key political litmus test for the Republican 2016 contenders.” Scott Walker, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul and Rick Perry have all confirmed that they “would be willing to kill what Obama presumably intends to tout as one of his major foreign policy achievements.”

    These Republicans are mostly pledging not to be “bound” by any agreement that is not submitted for Congressional approval. It’s unclear whether Republicans will muster a veto-proof majority for a bill that would require a Congressional vote on any eventual deal. But as Drucker notes, Republicans have long been criticizing the particulars of the emerging deal, which means that, if a deal is reached, the 2016 GOP hopefuls will oppose the specifics of whatever is negotiated, process concerns aside.

    This goes well beyond Iran: All signs are that the 2016 GOP candidates will shape their agendas largely around rolling back Obama accomplishments on a number of fronts. Consider:

    If a global climate treaty is achieved next year, the 2016 Republicans may well find themselves asked whether the United States should participate in it. With Obama talking up climate as a key part of his legacy, railing against any deal will be a good way to pander to the GOP base.

    If Obama’s executive actions shielding millions from deportation survive the courts, the 2016 Republicans will be expected to pledge to roll those back (as Congressional Republicans have already voted to do). While the GOP candidates will probably try to float versions of immigration reform, the immediate cancellation of Obama’s “executive amnesty” will be high on the agenda.

    If the Supreme Court guts Obamacare subsidies in three dozen states, 2016 Republicans will be loath to support restoring them. Scott Walker says it’s not on him to create an exchange. Ted Cruz’s post-SCOTUS Obamacare alternative nixes subsidies. Beyond any Court decision, while the candidates may try to offer their own reforms, they’ll be under pressure to make full repeal of the ACA’s spending on expanded coverage central to them. Jindal has already laid this down as a key marker.

  12. rikyrah says:




    Senate leader rejects fix for Voting Rights Act
    03/12/15 11:20 AM—UPDATED 03/12/15 12:02 PM
    By Steve Benen
    After this weekend’s gathering in Selma, Alabama, where former President George W. Bush stood and applauded a call for Congress to restore the Voting Rights Act with a bipartisan bill, it was hard not to wonder when the Republican majority would finally agree to tackle the issue.

    According to Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-Texas), the answer appears to be never.
    Cornyn said that the push to fix the so-called “pre-clearance” provision, which was struck down by the Supreme Court in 2013, is an effort to “drive divisions and create phony narratives.” Cornyn, who is responsible for scheduling floor votes, said he does not believe Congress should take up legislation to amend the act. He is the first top GOP Congressional leader to publicly say so.
    When Yahoo News reminded the Republican leader about “places where people are having difficulty voting,” Cornyn replied, “I think Eric Holder and this administration have trumped up and created an issue where there really isn’t one.”

    The Supreme Court’s conservative majority ruled two years ago that it’s up to Congress to fix the VRA formula. But when Yahoo News asked Cornyn, “So you don’t think that Congress needs to fix the formula?” the Texas Republican replied, simply, “No.”

    Yesterday, Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), who did not attend this weekend’s event in his own home state, said he hasn’t followed the issue of voting rights at all. “I’m not on the Judiciary Committee. I don’t follow that every day,” he said this week.

    Asked about the Supreme Court’s ruling, Shelby added, “I don’t know what the court did. I know what they did – they struck down something.”

    Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) was in Selma over the weekend and literally walked the streets “with a copy of draft Voting Rights Act legislation in his pocket, trying to win support from his GOP colleagues to restore the landmark law.” His search isn’t going well.

    Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.), meanwhile, is reluctant to sign on as a co-sponsor of the Voting Rights Amendment Act, though the Huffington Post reported this week that he seems to like the bill far more than he realizes.

  13. rikyrah says:

    I would still be out of my house, running down the street

  14. rikyrah says:

    Little League disbands Jackie Robinson West’s district
    BY SI WIRE Posted: Thu Mar. 12, 2015

    Little League International has disbanded Illinois District 4, which included Chicago’s Jackie Robinson West, the Chicago Tribune reports.

    In January, Little League stripped Jackie Robinson West of its United States championship at the 2014 Little League World Series after organizers of the team knowingly violated residency rules. An investigation found that the team used an inaccurate boundary map and met with outside neighborhoods and districts in Illinois to recruit players to build a competitive team.

    Jackie Robinson West became the first all-African-American squad to win the U.S. title, beating Las Vegas before losing the international championship against South Korea. In its place, Mountain Ridge Little League and its team from Las Vegas were awarded the 2014 championship.

    “This decision allows the local Little League programs in the area to continue with their operations under veteran, established district leadership and to continue to provide quality Little League experiences for the children in their communities,” Little League spokesman Brian McClintock said in a statement.

  15. rikyrah says:

    Former Maryland Lt. Gov. to run for Congress
    Mar. 12, 2015 9:13 AM EDT

    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Former Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown says he will run for Congress.

    Brown, a Democrat, made the announcement Thursday in an email to supporters. He’s running for the seat that will be open because Rep. Donna Edwards is running for Senate.

    The 4th Congressional District includes a substantial part of Prince George’s County, which Brown represented in the House of Delegates before he became lieutenant governor in 2007 under then-Gov. Martin O’Malley.

    Brown was the Democratic candidate who lost the governor’s race in November to Republican Larry Hogan in an upset.

  16. rikyrah says:

    GOP governors scramble for answers on ObamaCare
    By Peter Sullivan – 03/12/15 06:00 AM EDT

    Republican governors are scrambling to come up with a response if the Supreme Court cripples ObamaCare, leading to a tangle of divergent views that could make it tougher for the GOP to rally around a single solution.

    Political pressure on Republican governors to act will be intense if the high court invalidates subsidies that help millions of their states’ citizens buy health insurance.

    “The Republicans potentially have a PR nightmare on their hands, because what’s going to happen when 8 million people are going to be denied subsidies?” said Ford O’Connell, a Republican strategist and member of The Hill’s Contributors Blog.

    The fight over King v. Burwell is further complicated by the fact that several GOP governors could be launching presidential campaigns near the time the court reveals its decision, expected in June.

    Responses from Republican governors are all over the map.

  17. rikyrah says:

    True Colors: How Americans Are Finally Seeing the Real Republican Agenda

    Trevor LaFauci | March 10, 2015

    Governing is a lot harder than it seems.

    This is the lesson that Republicans in Congress are learning the hard way.

    Four months after a resounding midterm victory gave them a self-identified “mandate” and which gave the Democrats their own “Red Wedding” as Jon Stewart so accurately described, Republicans were excited, nay giddy, to have a chance to finally share their agenda with the American people.

    The problem is that it’s easy to be the armchair political party. Anytime the party in power does something, you have the chance to react to the situation with perfect 20/20 hindsight. ISIS is still on a rampage? Clearly, because we haven’t put boots on the ground. We were able to dispose of Omar Gaddafi in Libya without boots on the ground? Clearly, we waited too long and should have disposed of him sooner. Boko Haram is running amok in Africa? Uhh, well, it’s Africans killing Africans with no oil nearby so we don’t care so we’re not going to address this situation one way or another.

    And the list goes on and on.

    However, once Republican attained the largest Republican majority in over 80 years, it was now their time to shine. Mitch McConnell and John Boehner now had a chance to come forward and make up for five years of their stalled agenda due to a Republican-controlled House and a Democratic-controlled Senate. Now, with both branches of Congress under their control they could present their agenda loud and clear and then could either celebrate its success or could, as always, blame Obama for being a tyrant-dictator-Muslim-socialist king who hates America.

    And so, what better way to show off your ideas than to have your first piece of meaningful legislation with the 114th Congress be a robust jobs bill that would create 35 jobs.

    Wait, what?

    Yes, with 247 members in the House and 54 in the Senate, Republicans made the passing of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline their top legislative priority of the new year. Never mind that it wouldn’t create any meaningful long-term jobs, never mind that it would potentially destroy the Ogallala Aquifer in Nebraska, never mind that its the dirtiest kind of oil to transport, and never mind that this would be Canadian oil being shipped to the world market, this particular pipeline would make all the difference.

    Somebody forgot to tell President Barack Obama.

  18. rikyrah says:

    John McCain: “It was kind of a very rapid process. Everybody was looking forward to getting out of town because of the snowstorm.”
    By BURGESS EVERETT 3/11/15 8:00 PM EDT

    Some Republican senators admitted Wednesday they were caught off guard by the backlash to a letter warning Iranian leaders against a nuclear agreement with President Barack Obama. And Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said Republicans — many of whom blessed the missive during a brisk signing session at a Senate lunch a week ago, as senators prepared to flee a Washington snowstorm — should have given it closer consideration.

    “It was kind of a very rapid process. Everybody was looking forward to getting out of town because of the snowstorm,” McCain said. “I think we probably should have had more discussion about it, given the blowback that there is.”

  19. rikyrah says:

    More evidence Republicans will probably do nothing if Supreme Court guts subsidies

    By Greg Sargent
    March 10 

    Scott Walker has now supplied yet another piece of evidence that Republicans will likely find themselves unable or unwilling to act if the Supreme Court guts Obamacare subsidies for millions in three dozen states. In the process, he’s illustrated how such a Court ruling will likely set in motion a mad frenzy of buck-passing among Republicans over what to do about all those people — and how that might spill over into the 2016 presidential race.

    A spokesperson for Walker has now confirmed that should the Court rule that way, he will not view it as the state’s responsibility to fix the problem that results — and instead says that responsibility will fall to the federal government.

    Before we get to the significance of that, some background. As it stands now, some 185,000 Wisconsinites have been declared eligible for subsidies, and many of them could conceivably see subsidies taken away by the Court. But in Wisconsin, an anti-ACA ruling could have particularly dicey political implications for Walker, because of the way the state has approached the Affordable Care Act. As Joshua Green recently explained:

    Of the Republican presidential contenders, no one has more at stake than Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker. Led by Walker, Wisconsin declined the ACA’s Medicaid expansion and opted against creating a state-based exchange to provide access to health insurance, relying instead on the federal exchange. This means that should the court side with the King challenger, residents of Wisconsin…will lose the subsidies that make their insurance affordable….

    Walker will be in a tougher spot because his own health-care plan also removed 83,000 people from BadgerCare (Wisconsin’s Medicaid program) and directed them to seek coverage the federal exchange. In Wisconsin, these people are called “transitioners,” since they’re transitioning into the private market…

    Walker will find himself in an especially difficult position. He’ll have to come up with a way to help the roughly 185,000 Wisconsinites who will lose their subsidies. And in addition, he’ll be personally culpable for the 83,000 low-income transitioners who would not have been affected by a court decision had he left them on Medicaid, but would now lose their subsidies and probably their health insurance.

  20. rikyrah says:

    From Charles Pierce:

    The Republican Party Is A Party Of Subversives

    Republicans are actively working to undermine the American union.

    … The modern Republican party has become an authentic mechanism for political subversion, and it’s not just unknown crazy people from Texas who are driving the train. A rookie meathead submarines the president’s foreign policy. Rick Perry is currently running for president on a platform more suited to a campaign conducted under the Articles of Confederation. Mitch McConnell, the majority leader of the United States Senate, has suggested that governors out in the several states ignore the Environmental Protection Agency. At every conservative gathering, from CPAC on down, there at least is one panel touting the benefits of nullification and old-school states rights politics. Yes, a lot of it is about how states rights got whipped over civil rights in the 1960’s, but it’s not all about race. It’s about a deliberate, calculated attempt by one of the only two political parties we allow ourselves to dismantle the federal union. They want the country to come apart so they can sell off the pieces to the people who run their campaigns. They are free to prove to me that I’m wrong.

    … This heresy, which should have died at Gettysburg, is part and parcel of the modern conservative movement, which was born out of the flotsam left behind by the (partial) fall of American apartheid. For years, Republican politicians have accepted the money, and the support, and the cheers of nullification subversives from the League of the South and the Council of Conservative Citizens to the Wise Use people and the militia people out west, to the claque
    of subversives who set up camp at the Bundy Ranch. Without the support of people engaged in polite — and, occasionally, not very polite — sedition, the Republican party would be a bunch of rich old white guys pissing themselves in the grill room of a restricted country club…

    The Republican party is a mechanism for the subversion of the federal republic. It doesn’t matter if the party’s stars are doing it to please The Base, or because they don’t know any better, or because they think it’s the right thing to do. They are actively working to undermine the American union…

  21. rikyrah says:

    uh huh

    uh huh


    Jackie Robinson West may leave Little League for Babe Ruth

    Posted: 03/11/2015, 09:45am | Sun-Times Staff

    The Jackie Robinson West Little League team may take its ball and find a different home.

    The team that had its national title stripped over residency rules announced Wednesday it is looking into switching leagues, as originally reported by DNAinfo.

    A statement issued by the Henderson Adam law firm, which had been representing the team in the wake of the residency controversy, said the Cal Ripken-Babe Ruth League offers services similar to Little League International.

    JRW parents and coaches feel strongly that Little League International inappropriately treated JRW children and parent volunteers, especially when Little League intentionally decided to announce the proposed change regarding the championship title to their corporate partner, ESPN, before speaking with JRW parents, coaches and children,” the statement reads.

    “This insensitive act by Little League International is a critical factor affecting JRW’s decision to explore other opportunities.”

    The league has 300 to 400 youth players and 90 to 100 parent volunteers, according to the statement.

    Little League International announced in February it would strip the South Side baseball team of the national championship because the adults running the program tried to steal territory that was home to talented players from neighboring programs by falsifying and backdating maps.

    That meant some of the boys on the team Chicago fell in love with — who were feted from Millennium Park to the White House — were not eligible to play on the team.

    After JRW was stripped of its national title, Mountain Ridge Little League from Las Vegas was awarded the U.S. title.

  22. rikyrah says:

    Rest in Peace, Rev. Barrow.


    Rev. Willie T. Barrow, ‘Little Warrior,’ was civil rights leader, mentor

    Posted: 03/12/2015, 07:40am |

    By Maudlyne Ihejirika and Maureen O’Donnell

    The Rev. Willie T. Barrow, a direct link to some of the greatest civil rights leaders and protests, died Thursday at age 90.

    She had been in the intensive care unit of Jackson Park Hospital, getting treatment for a blood clot in her lung.

    “She was small in stature but she was a giant in character,” said the Rev. Michael L. Pfleger of St. Sabina Church. “She was a person who was rooted in faith and who was a warrior for justice. The best way we can honor her is to live like her.”

    “She never stopped fighting, and she’d been coming to PUSH the last three weeks in a wheelchair,” the Rev. Jesse Jackson said. “She remained current, very spiritual, and through her illness, never stopped caring for other people. Rev. Barrow leaves a legacy of service, selfless service, inspirational, courageous service, and a sacred commitment to doing God’s will.”

    Charismatic, with chic earrings and a winsome smile, she was called the “Little Warrior” for her activism on civil rights and labor and women’s causes. But people underestimated the petite reverend at their peril. As Chicago Sun-Times columnist Vernon Jarrett once said, she could issue a down-home growl from a pulpit or a picket line.

    Many in Chicago’s African-American community saw her as a sister, godmother, matriarch and mentor. She worked with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks and the Rev. Ralph Abernathy on sit-ins and boycotts in the South, including the historic 1965 March on Selma.

    Often described as the first woman to head a major U.S. civil rights organization, Rev. Barrow grew up in rural Burton, Texas, the daughter of Rev. Nelson Taplin, a Church of God minister. “My dad was Baptist, my mother was Methodist, and my daddy’s baby brother (who lived with us) was a Jehovah’s Witness,” she once told the Windy City Times.

    For her high school education, her parents sent her to join an older sister in San Francisco. She studied theology and psychology at Warner Pacific College in Portland, Oregon, and was later ordained.

    During World War II, she worked as a welder at the massive Kaiser shipyards in Swan Island, Washington, where she met another welder who would become her husband, Clyde “Honey” Barrow, a Belizean immigrant. In 1945, they moved to Chicago, and he landed a job with General Motors.

    She labored on the front lines of the civil rights movement, attending the 1963 March on Washington and planning marches and demonstrations. She got to know Rosa Parks and King.

    Rev. Barrow offered a light-hearted insight on King in a 1984 interview with Ebony magazine. When he visited her home, “We’d send out for ribs, one of his favorite foods, and I’d get out my nice silver, my cloth napkins and my best china,” she recalled. “Then he’d say, ‘Now wait just a minute, Reverend, I have my silver right here,’ indicating his fingers. And he’d eat his barbecue and lick his fingers just like we did.”

    “I opened my house up to all of the powerful women in the movement — Coretta Scott King, Dorothy Height, Addie Wyatt. I hung around with the people that had the power. That’s how I learned,” she once told the Sun-Times.

    “We have to teach this generation, train more Corettas, more Addies, more Dorothys. If these youth don’t know whose shoulders they stand on, they’ll take us back to slavery. And I believe that’s why the Lord is still keeping me here.”

    House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi visits with Rev. Willie Barrow before a press conference at PUSH headquarters in 2012. | Al Podgorski~Chicago Sun-Times

    In the late 1960s, she and Rev. Jackson helped organize the Chicago chapter of Operation Breadbasket, a precursor to the Rainbow PUSH Coalition.

    “She led our consumer advocacy, fighting against stores in our community that sold bad meat, old vegetables and overpriced food. We marched in front of A&P, National and Jewel’s at that time,” Jackson said. “We fought to get good products on the shelves, fought to get advertising in black newspapers and magazines, money in black banks, and for voter registration.”

    “She led a group of women who went to Vietnam when we were working with Dr. King to try to end the war. She went to South Africa, met Nelson Mandela, and we were there together the day Mandela was released from jail,” he said. “She led a group of women to Nicaragua during that war trying to bring peace.”

    After her son came out, she worked for gay rights and urged churches to embrace people with AIDS. Keith Barrow, a recording artist and her only child, died of the disease in 1983.

    She helped nurse him through his illness and she made one of the early pieces of the AIDS Memorial Quilt. “My son was gay,” Rev. Barrow said in a 1988 Sun-Times interview, “and there was nothing ever that he and I did not share. I was not only his mother, but I was his friend.”

    Asked if his sexual orientation changed their relationship, she was adamant. “Never! If God loved him, I had to love him,” she said. “If anything, it drew us closer together, because I knew he needed special understanding, special communication. I went out of my way to show I loved him.”

    Rev. Barrow was a witness to many historic Chicago milestones. She worked for the election of the city’s first black mayor, Harold Washington, and she was at the hospital when he was declared dead of a heart attack. As chaos and skirmishes broke out at City Hall over who should succeed him, she helped lead a prayer for peace at a City Council session, saying, “God, Chicago needs you tonight.”

  23. rikyrah says:

    McCain, Rand Paul roll out new excuses for sabotage letter
    03/12/15 08:00 AM—UPDATED 03/12/15 08:17 AM
    By Steve Benen
    After putting his signature on the Senate Republicans’ infamous sabotage letter, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) started hedging Tuesday night, saying the GOP’s missive to Iranian leaders may not have been “the best way” for his party to achieve its goals.

    By late yesterday, the longtime senator offered an entirely new rationale.
    Some Republican senators admitted Wednesday they were caught off guard by the backlash to a letter warning Iranian leaders against a nuclear agreement with President Barack Obama. And Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said Republicans – many of whom blessed the missive during a brisk signing session at a Senate lunch a week ago, as senators prepared to flee a Washington snowstorm – should have given it closer consideration.

    “It was kind of a very rapid process. Everybody was looking forward to getting out of town because of the snowstorm,” McCain said.
    McCain went on to tell Politico that he and his colleagues “probably should have had more discussion” about the document, “given the blowback that there is.”

    Note, this appears to be the third excuse Republicans have come up with for the letter intended to derail American foreign policy. The first rationale was that the 47 GOP senators were kidding, and this was all an attempt at being “cheeky.” The second was that Republicans tried to undermine international nuclear talks, but this is all President Obama’s fault.

    And here’s John McCain rolling out the option behind Door #3: Republicans were concerned about snow, so they rushed.

    Oddly enough, that’s probably slightly better than the rationale Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) came up with.

    On NBC’s “Today” show yesterday morning, the Kentucky Republican told Matt Lauer that he signed on to the sabotage letter because he wanted to “strengthen the president’s hand.”

    If there’s a way to see this as a coherent argument, I can’t think of it. Rand Paul thought it would strengthen Obama’s hand at the negotiating table if Republicans told Iranian officials not to trust or cooperate with Obama?

  24. rikyrah says:

    That’s why you’ll remain in the Senate, Senator Pittypat.


    Lindsey Graham: as president I would deploy the military against Congress

    Republican senator and presidential maybe-hopeful Lindsey Graham stopped by the “politics and pies” forum in Concord, New Hampshire, today, where he announced that if he is elected president in 2016, his first act will be to deploy the military in Washington to force Congress to reverse cuts to the defense and intelligence budgets.

    Yes, you heard that right. Here are Graham’s exact words:

    And here’s the first thing I would do if I were president of the United States. I wouldn’t let Congress leave town until we fix this. I would literally use the military to keep them in if I had to. We’re not leaving town until we restore these defense cuts. We are not leaving town until we restore the intel cuts.

    Graham would use the military to force members of Congress to not just vote on the bill — but to pass it. Graham didn’t say “until I get an up-or-down vote on restoring defense cuts.” He said “until we restore these defense cuts.”

    In other words, Graham is proposing that his first act as president would be to use the military to force the legislative branch to pass his agenda

  25. rikyrah says:

    Empire Fans…I loved this!


    We Made a Dynasty-Style Empire Credits Sequence

    By Louis Plamondon and Josef Adalian

    For all of Empire’s many assets — juicy story lines that move at hurricane speed, addictive original music, the force of nature that is Cookie Lyons — Fox’s overnight phenom sadly lacks one ingredient: a grand opening credit sequence (and theme song) that sets the stage for the awesomeness that is to come. Yes, technically, each episode does begin with a five-second musical sting and a flash of the Empire logo. But like too many broadcast-TV dramas today, Empire forgoes the once obligatory opening opus. There are none of the high-fives and hilarity that began every Beverly Hills, 90210; no absurdist animation set to Danny Elfman as with Desperate Housewives. Quite frankly, it’s just not right. So Vulture decided to do something about it. We asked video editor Louis Plamondon to imagine what an opening sequence for Empire might look like had the series existed in an era when every great TV soap opera had equally great main titles. And we asked him to pattern this imaginary opening after a show Empire co-creator Lee Daniels has specifically cited as an inspiration for his series: ABC’s iconic, Aaron Spelling–produced Dynasty. Check out the results below.

  26. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone :)

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