Tuesday Open Thread | Sidney Poitier



More Sidney!


Today’s feature is Lilies of the Field.

Wiki: Lilies of the Field is a 1963 film adapted by James Poe from the 1962 novel with the same name by William Edmund Barrett, and stars Sidney Poitier, Lilia Skala, Stanley Adams, and Dan Frazer. It was produced and directed by Ralph Nelson. The title comes from Matthew 6:27-33 a portion of the Sermon on the Mount in the New Testament and its parallel scripture from Luke 12:27-30. It also features an early film score by prolific composer Jerry Goldsmith.[2]

It tells the story of an African American itinerant worker who encounters a group of East German nuns, who believe he has been sent to them by God to build them a new chapel.

Homer Smith (Sidney Poitier) is an itinerant handyman/jack-of-all-trades who stops at a farm in the Arizona desert to obtain some water for his car. There he sees several women working on a fence, very ineptly. The women, who speak very little English, introduce themselves as German, Austrian and Hungarian nuns. The mother superior, the leader of the nuns, persuades him to do a small roofing repair. He stays overnight, assuming that he will be paid in the morning. Next day, Smith tries to persuade the mother superior to pay him by quoting Luke 10:7, “The laborer is worthy of his hire.” Mother Maria Marthe (Lilia Skala, called “Mother Maria”), responds by asking him to read another Bible verse from the Sermon on the Mount: “Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin. And yet I say unto you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.”

Mother Maria likes things done her way. The nuns have essentially no money and subsist by living off the land, on what vegetables the arid climate provides, and some milk and eggs. Even after being stonewalled when asking for payment, and after being persuaded to stay for a meal, and against his better judgment, Smith agrees to stay another day to help them with other small jobs, always with the faint hope that Mother Maria will pay him for his work.

As Smith’s skills and strengths become apparent to the nuns, they come to believe that he has been sent by God to fulfill their dream of building a chapel for the townsfolk—who are Mexican and impoverished—as the nearest church is miles away.

Sidney Poitier In 'Lilies Of The Field'

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47 Responses to Tuesday Open Thread | Sidney Poitier

  1. Ametia says:

    Twitter Will Test Autoblocking Abuse

    Twitter will broaden its punishment against abusive users, according to an update of the site’s rules of user conduct. Whereas before, only direct, specific threats were banned, any promotion of violence against others can now get a user suspended. Accounts may now also be suspended temporarily for a kind of “time out.” The company will also test automatically blocking tweets that match previous patterns of abuse, preventing posts from appearing in their targets’ feeds.

    READ IT AT New York Times http://elink.thedailybeast.com/4e555ee3e018bee76c3458202ipej.3qrk/VTavyEmOq444S18ZBc094

  2. Ametia says:

    Tue., Apr. 21, 2015 4:17 p.m.

    Justice Department opens civil rights investigation of police custody death in Baltimore
    The Justice Department says it has opened a federal investigation after a man died of spinal injuries he suffered while in police custody in Baltimore, the AP reports. The investigation will look for civil rights violations in the treatment of Freddie Gray, who was arrested April 12 and placed in a transport van. He was rushed to the hospital in critical condition about 30 minutes later and died Sunday of what police described as a significant spinal injury.

    Read more » http://link.washingtonpost.com/548289943b35d072688b4aaa2ipf5.6q3y/VTawe0mOO6lbmVRlAe0ca

  3. rikyrah says:

    How One Woman Went From P. Diddy’s Assistant to U.S. Diplomat

    In 2007, music mogul P. Diddy launched a nationwide search for a new assistant on YouTube. In less than 24 hours, he received a barrage of submissions from applicants all over the world. After narrowing it down to three candidates, P. Diddy announced the winner on an episode of The Oprah Show.

    Heather Thompson, a lawyer and former Peace Corps volunteer, got the gig. Now, almost eight years later, Oprah shares Heather’s update, which she says is one of the most impressive she’s seen.

    After working for P. Diddy for a year, Heather received a call from the State Department, inviting her to become a U.S. diplomat. Her first assignment was in Johannesburg, South Africa, where she helped create an educational exchange program between the United States and students from The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls.

    Watch the above video to find out how Heather is preparing for her new post in Mexico City.


  4. rikyrah says:

    Just finished watching this week’s Revenge.

    My mouth is still hanging open because of the ending.

  5. sunshine616 says:

    Wtf!!! He gets to go on vacation???!!!!! I’m done! Tell me again that white ain’t privileged!! I asked if this fucker was paying for judges too. I guess I got my answer.

  6. rikyrah says:

    and yet…

    he wasn’t shot. imagine that


  7. rikyrah says:

    folks here and elsewhere already nailed it: Walker is the Koch stooge


    Charles G. and David H. Koch, the influential and big-spending conservative donors, have a favorite in the race for the Republican nomination: Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin.

    On Monday, at a fund-raising event in Manhattan for the New York State Republican Party, David Koch told donors that he and his brother, who oversee one of the biggest private political organizations in the country, believed that Mr. Walker was the Republican Party’s best hope for recapturing the White House.

    “We will support whoever the candidate is,” said Mr. Koch,
    according to two people who attended the event. “But it should be Scott
    Walker.” …

    In his remarks, made after Mr. Walker had addressed the group, Mr. Koch suggested that the political organizations they oversee — which include Americans for Prosperity, a grass-roots organization, and Freedom Partners, a donor trade group with an affiliated super PAC — would not intervene in the Republican primary process on behalf of a single candidate.

    But according to the two attendees, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to freely describe the remarks, Mr. Koch indicated that the Koch family might personally offer financial support to Mr. Walker…


  8. rikyrah says:

    What’s it take to be wealthy in D.C.? Apparently a net worth of $1.25 million.

    When asked how much money it takes to be “financially comfortable” in the Washington region, residents, on average, said an individual needs to have a personal net worth of $270,000, according to a survey released Tuesday morning.

    And to be considered wealthy? Residents surveyed said it would take a personal net worth of $1.25 million to achieve that.

    The report, commissioned by Charles Schwab and conducted by Koski Research, surveyed 1,000 residents online between ages 21 and 75. Seventeen percent of those surveyed resided in the District, while the rest live in the Maryland and Virginia suburbs.


  9. rikyrah says:

    Senate reaches deal to vote on AG nominee Loretta Lynch
    By Alexander Bolton – 04/21/15 10:16 AM EDT

    Senate leaders on Tuesday morning announced a deal on a long-stalled human trafficking bill, setting up a vote to confirm Loretta Lynch as attorney general later this week.

    “I’m glad we can say there is a bipartisan proposal that will allow us to complete action on this legislation so we can provide help to the victims who desperately need it,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) announced on the Senate floor.

    “As soon as we finish the trafficking bill, as I’ve indicated for some time now, we’ll move to the president’s nominee for attorney general in the next day or so,” he added.

    Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Senate Democratic Conference Secretary Patty Murray (Wash.) negotiated compromise language on abortion to spring the trafficking bill from a stalemate.

    The agreement calls for funding a domestic trafficking victims’ fund with federal dollars appropriated by Congress and money collected from criminal offenders, preserving the prohibition on federal funds being used to pay for abortion services but not expanding it.


  10. rikyrah says:

    Michelle Obama To Speak At Graduation For Hadiya Pendleton’s Classmates
    April 21, 2015 9:52 AM

    CHICAGO (CBS) — First Lady Michelle Obama will return to Chicago in June, to give the commencement speech at what would have been Hadiya Pendleton’s graduation ceremony.

    Hadiya, 15, became the face of Chicago gun victims in 2013, when she was slain in a public park a mile away from the Obama family’s Kenwood home, a week after performing with her school drill team at President Barack Obama’s second inauguration.

    An honors student at King College Prep High School, Hadiya would have graduated this June had she not been killed.

    Hadiya’s death struck a chord with the first lady, who attended Hadiya’s funeral, met her classmates, and invited her parents to the 2013 State of the Union Address.

    She also gave an emotional speech about gun violence after Hadiya’s funeral, saying she felt a strong connection to the Pendleton family.

    “As I visited with the Pendleton family at Hadiya’s funeral, I couldn’t get over how familiar they felt to me, because what I realized was Hadiya’s family was just like my family. Hadiya Pendleton was me, but I got to grow up,” she said.


  11. rikyrah says:

    Good for these parents


    Educators alarmed by some questions on N.Y. Common Core tests

    By Valerie Strauss April 19

    I wrote a post yesterday saying education activists were reporting more than 175,000 New York students had opted out of Common Core English Language Arts exams given last week — and many more districts were still unheard from. New York is at the center of a growing movement among parents around the country to protest new standardized tests aligned to the Common Core (or similar state standards) that they think are unfair to students and teachers because the results are used for high-stakes decisions against the advice of assessment experts. The post also mentioned some complaints from teachers about the composition of the tests, which are aligned to the Core and were created for the state of New York by Pearson, the largest education company in the world.


    Here’s a new piece, by Principal Carol Burris of South Side High School in the Rockville Centre School District in New York about educators’ concerns with questions on the Common Core tests and the meaning of the opt-out movement.

    Burris, who has been principal since 2000 and just announced her early retirement, taught at the middle and high school levels and earned a doctorate from Teachers College, Columbia University. Her dissertation, which studied her district’s detracking reform in math, received the 2003 National Association of Secondary Schools’ Principals Middle Level Dissertation of the Year Award. She was named New York’s 2013 High School Principal of the Year by the School Administrators Association of New York and the National Association of Secondary School Principals, and was tapped as the 2010 New York State Outstanding Educator by the School Administrators Association of New York State. She has also written several books, numerous articles and many posts on this blog about New York’s botched implementation of school reform.

    By Carol Burris

    Many New York parents are in rebellion. They are determined to see Pearson’s Common Core test machine grind to a halt. The state’s Grade 3- 8 opt-outs will likely exceed 200,000 and those who allowed their children to take the test are not happy campers. Parents and teachers are refusing to be bullied into silence about this year’s tests, exposing the well-above grade level reading passages, and tasks that are bringing young children to tears.


  12. rikyrah says:

    Fairfax jail inmate in Taser death was shackled
    By Tom Jackman and Justin Jouvenal April 11

    A mentally ill woman who died after a stun gun was used on her at the Fairfax County jail in February was restrained with handcuffs behind her back, leg shackles and a mask when a sheriff’s deputy shocked her four times, incident reports obtained by The Washington Post show.

    Natasha McKenna initially cooperated with deputies, placed her hands through her cell door food slot and agreed to be handcuffed, the reports show. But McKenna, whose deteriorating mental state had caused Fairfax to seek help for her, then began trying to fight her way out of the cuffs, repeatedly screaming, “You promised you wouldn’t hurt me!” the reports show.

    Then, six members of the Sheriff’s Emergency Response Team, dressed in white full-body biohazard suits and gas masks, arrived and placed a wildly struggling 130-pound McKenna into full restraints, their reports state. But when McKenna wouldn’t bend her knees so she could be placed into a wheeled restraint chair, a lieutenant delivered four 50,000-volt shocks from the Taser, enabling the other deputies to strap her into the chair, the reports show.

    The account comes from dozens of pages of sheriff’s deputy incident reports that provide the first complete account of the events leading to the death of the 37-year-old Alexandria mother that has troubled her family and local mental health advocates.

    Fairfax County Sheriff Stacey Kincaid declined to comment on the case but defended the use of a stun gun on a restrained prisoner, saying it was “a means that is often useful to ensure the safety of a person” rather than using physical force to gain compliance. She said stun guns were used “occasionally” on prisoners who are already restrained.


  13. Liza says:

    They never listen, do they? It takes a crisis, someone has to die…


    • Ametia says:



      Been saying this forever and a day. Why would these men put their lives on the line by engaging with these killer cops. Confronting cops for what? They must think we’re deaf, dumb, and blind.

    • yahtzeebutterfly says:

      Maybe billboards near international airports should be posted with something like “Beware that a lot of police officers not only negatively profile and stereotype innocent Black individuals but also kill unarmed Black individuals.”

      Leaflets could also be passed out to international visitors, UN delegates and various embassies here.

      Perhaps then, at least our national representatives would be forced out of their silence and have to address the problem.

      From Lisa Bloom:

      Lisa Bloom @LisaBloom · 17h 17 hours ago
      “Shall we start counting the days until a presidential candidate comments on the appalling # of cop shootings of unarmed black Americans?”

  14. Ladies, check your email.

  15. rikyrah says:

    DALAYYYY @TheToast2015

    @MichaelEDyson @PragObots @IAmSophiaNelson @CornelWest @TheNewRepublic Funny, there was no code when West attacked Obama on personal level

  16. rikyrah says:

    Kevin Grüssing @KevDGrussing

    Gabourey Sidibe and Ta’Rhonda Jones will be series regulars in #Empire Season 2: http://tvline.com/2015/04/20/empire-season-2-tarhonda-jones-gabourey-sidibe-series-regulars/

  17. rikyrah says:

    Only4RM @Only4RM

    .@CornelWest apologists are NOW worried about a public fight! Crickets FOR YEARS as he’s unraveled & spewed his bile on Fox on the regular.

  18. Ametia, you’re rocking this post. I had someone from Twitter tell me they are enjoying it too.

  19. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone :)

  20. Ametia says:

    SG2, where are you?

    Blue Bell recalls all its ice cream products over listeria concerns
    By Holly Yan, CNN
    Updated 8:01 AM ET, Tue April 21, 2015

    After weeks of gradual recalls, Blue Bell Creameries is now pulling all of its products off the shelves.

    The company is recalling its entire line of ice cream, frozen yogurt, sherbet and other frozen snacks because they could be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, the company says.

    “Today’s decision was the result of findings from an enhanced sampling program initiated by Blue Bell which revealed that Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream half gallons produced on March 17, 2015, and March 27, 2015, contained the bacteria,” the company said in a statement.

    “This means Blue Bell has now had several positive tests for Listeria in different places and plants.”

    So far, Blue Bell has documented five cases of Listeria in Kansas and three cases in Texas.


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