Wednesday, May 31, 2017


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Nas Calls Trump a Racist in an Open Letter

Article Image: Nas Calls Trump a Racist in an Open Letter

In an open letter delivered through Mass Appeal, Nasir Jones laid out a scathing indictment of the Trump administration and the political apparatus in general, on Tuesday, May 30. In prototypical Nas fashion, he brought readers through the ages, as 43-year-old Black American artist reflecting on the harsh realities imposed on his people by politicians in this country for as long as he could remember; who now embraces his power with the word as his means of arming those who came up like him, to fight the power.
"I don’t pay attention to politics at the moment. For what? There’s no reason. For me, it doesn’t make any sense. We all know a racist is in office," Nas writes in Action Speaks Louder Than Words: No time for lippin' in the so-called "Trump era." He opens up the piece suggesting that Black people learn to disassociate themselves with their identity if they want to be successful in America, even if it means surviving in a system that will set you up for prison or death in any case. He provided the case of a lynching that was ruled a suicide and cited O.J. as a prime example of how avoiding your Blackness will not save you from facing the ramifications of being Black in society. With Trump in office, Nas infers, this truth is as affirmed as it ever was by the highest reigns of power.
It is with this knowledge that Nas says that in this time he sees it as fit as any time in his life, to weaponize his word, which he's been doing for more than 25 years. Only now, he is prepared to shine a light on his music as something amounting to more than rhythmic tunes. "I talked about it all. I thought about most of the shit somebody could think of. I move through action. My music is action. What I’m giving you through my music is my actions," wrote Nas. From the crack epidemic to mass incarceration, he's seen it all, and now he tells it, for the youth to learn their way around it and to pick up where he leaves off with it.
Read the entire letter here:
The only way the black man gets a little piece in America is if he takes the O.J. stance: “I’m not black, I’m O.J.” When you ignore the shit that’s happening to people you can live in this fantasy, this American fantasy that you belong to… who? You ignore what’s happening, and that gives you peace. Because what’s going on is enough to make people insane.
Some guy lynched in a tree at Piedmont Park in Atlanta, Georgia, and the cops rule it a suicide. Now, don’t get me wrong—suicides happen. There are blacks suffering from mental illness just like whites suffering from mental illness, except that whites who suffer from mental illness and have interactions with the cops, they end up living. Blacks, we get killed. So if you want to sit back and ignore all that, go the O.J. route. Just remember, even he got dealt with at the end of the day.
So where do I stand? I stand just as a man, doing what I have to do. Doing what I was born to do. No one can tell me who I am. No one can tell me where I can go and cannot go.
No one can tell me what’s right based on what works for their system, and have me believe it. Nah.
The Creator put us here to do our thing, so I do my thing. And I don’t pay attention to politics at the moment. For what? There’s no reason. For me, it doesn’t make any sense. We all know a racist is in office. People can talk their shit. Comedians can sound racist. People can go through their moments of that shit, but when you have the responsibility of being President and you carry on like that, you send a strong message to people outside of your group that they ain’t worth shit.
So why would I focus on that unless I’m in the political game? Unless I’m running for office I don’t have to pay attention to know that. If I ever vote again—when it’s time to vote again, and I feel like voting again—I don’t have to follow the news to know who I’m voting against. But then you wind up saying “Who’s the next motherfucker coming in, and how does that help?”
My way of addressing these issues is through my work. Whatever president may be in office doesn’t affect my work directly. The way he affects people is what affects me. I observe what’s going on and that goes into my creative process. The person himself, I’m not caught up with. I don’t even have time for Trump or Pence. I don’t give a fuck.
My focus is on what’s happening with real people in their everyday lives. How they behave, the decisions they make, and how that affects families. I grew up in a single-parent household, so I was affected by that life. But it didn’t stop me. So I speak to the everyday people. I speak to everybody. If the people are bothered by it, I speak on it. If the people are bothered and want change, I speak on that.
It’s the same way I felt as a youngster when Ronald Reagan was in office. My voice at that point didn’t fuckin’ matter to anybody. I didn’t care. You know what’s different today? I’m older, that means I’m more responsible. That means paying attention to what’s happening to my country.
But in reality, art is gonna thrive regardless. Whether it’s affected by who’s in office or not, art thrives. I live in that—I live in those walls, I live in those wires, I live in those pencils and papers, and that sound. I’m not caught up in politics. I saw Gerald Ford and his vice president Nelson Rockefeller. I saw Jimmy Carter. I saw Ronald Reagan, and I saw George Bush, Sr. I saw Bill Clinton, George Bush, Jr., and Barack Obama. I’m good.
I got my own things to say and I been saying how I feel on the mic. Sometimes people ask me “Why you didn’t say this?” or “Why you didn’t talk about that?” You got a million people out here with a million different views and I heard it all. I talked about it all. I thought about most of the shit somebody could think of. I move through action. My music is action. What I’m giving you through my music is my actions.
I might have a song I want to deliver and then do things around that song that represents that song. And that can represent people and change and help with the education of young people. I like those ideas. I like ideas about helping kids in the inner city want to learn. Helping them want to be more. I’m all about being what you can be, because you never know.
That position, the presidency, seems so far away. But Barack Obama changed the game so that now, whether you’re a woman or Latino or whoever, you can feel that running for office can be a real goal. Winning the election could be real for someone in this country, if that’s what you want. As a kid, at one point I thought I wanted to go to film school. It was gonna be films or music. Steven Spielberg, George Lucas—those were big names for me coming up.
I’m doing all the things I ever dreamed of, even though there was a Ronald Reagan, even though there was laws that ruthlessly destroyed the black community, put tons of us in prison on trumped-up charges, and put us in jail for a long time over crimes that other people get a smack on the hand for. It’s basically slavery. It’s like the top of Sacha Jenkins’ documentary, Burn, Motherfucker Burn! where this guy says “I see blacks as a superior pet.” You know what I’m talking about?
From when I was born, people have enforced laws targeting so-called minorities to keep us enslaved, in a way. I survived that.
I read Eastern philosophy as a teen, so I see balance in everything, I have a cooler head because of it. If I could do that then, now we can save many more, ya dig? Especially in this day and age with all the resources we have, all the information of the Information Age, And that’s whether Trump’s in office or not. So, I don’t got time for lippin’. I got time for actions. Anytime I’m speaking it’s action.

On Friday May 26, 2017 fifteen-year-old Darrius Smith was executed by an off duty law enforcement officer.

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He was shot twice in the legs before being shot three more times in the chest at close range. Multiple witnesses say his assailant dropped him with the shots to the legs and then stood over him and emptied three rounds into his chest. Two of his friends attempted to get out of harms way by running in different directions. The shooter took aim at them as well. He caught one with a shot to the buttocks and another shot to the hand. As the man approached, the child plead for his life. He begged the shooter not to shoot him any more. Instead the unidentified shooter pursued his friends, shooting multiple rounds at the boys as they ran for their lives.
The two teenagers that survived the shooters array of bullets will be facing criminal charges for the murder of their friend. The man who killed one teen, wounded another and put a third in eminent fear for his life, faces no criminal liability whatsoever. This is the state of America concerning black lives and law enforcement.
These three boys, two fifteen-year-olds and a fourteen year old, were headed to a nearby Friday market event; a common Friday night hang out for local teens. They were traveling by rail and got off at the appropriate stop. Their assailant got off at this stop as well. Its unclear how the four became involved in a dispute. The shooter claims the boys attacked him yielding a toy gun and demanding money. Its not uncommon for law enforcement to cry self-defense in order to justify an indefensible shooting. This tactic becomes even more convenient given our society’s rush to criminalize people of color. So these three boys, with no criminal records, suddenly decide to become armed robbers, in broad day light, at a popular Friday night rail stop and chose as their victim a man apparently carrying nothing at all of value. This is the only version of events being promoted in the media. The limited information the families have been able to receive from the two surviving boys (both in custody) assert that there was no robbery attempt. It seems clear there was some sort of dispute and that this dispute was ended when this law enforcement officer began shooting indiscriminately at defenseless children. The majority of the evidence available indicates that the officer shot a child to death in cold blood and attempted to kill the others as well. The boys and other independent witnesses confirm the apparent criminal intent of the custom agent. He sits at home, a free man. A fourteen year old child is being held in police custody at a local hospital. A fifteen-year-old is incarcerated in a juvenile facility. Darrius Smith’s body is still the custody of the medical examiner. He’ll never go home again.
All this is happening in California.. an off duty police officer claims that 3 teens in broad daylight with scores of people around tried to rob him with a fake gun.. The officer shot one in the leg and then stood over him and shot him till he was dead.. The kid was unarmed.. His friends were charged with murder.. yes the murder this off duty cop committed..

Monday, May 29, 2017

Berniecrat Christine Pellegrino Flips a Republican District: How Did She Do It?!

TYT Politics Reporter Nomiki Konst ( sits down with special guest, Christine Pellegrino, who is now the New York district 9 assembly woman elect! District 9 has been a red district for as long as anyone can remember. Donald Trump won the district by 23% --so how did this Berniecrat crush her republican opponent?

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Empire Files: Buying a Slave – The Hidden World of US/Philippines Trafficking

Human trafficking is a hidden industry that brings in $150 billion in illegal profits every year. In the United States, tens of thousands are trafficked annually—the biggest clients being major hotel chains and foreign diplomats. 

The Philippines is one of the largest labor exporters in the world. 6,000 Filipinos—mostly women—leave the country every single day to work, because of mass unemployment and poverty. Tricked by placement agencies, thousands end up living as virtual slaves.

Damayan, a New York-based organization led by Filipina domestic workers, is fighting this underground crisis. Abby Martin speaks to several members of the organization about how this exodus of women has devastated a generation of families, and how they are fighting back.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

The Infamous, 40-Year Tuskegee Study

Participants in the Tuskegee Syphilis Study. (Credit: National Archives)

On May 16, 1997, President Bill Clinton issued a formal apology for the Tuskegee Syphilis Study, a notorious research project involving hundreds of poor African-American men that took place from 1932 to 1972 in Macon County, Alabama. The men in the study had syphilis, a sexually transmitted infection, but didn’t know it. Instead they were told they had “bad blood” and given placebos, even after the disease became treatable with penicillin in the 1940s. Five of the study’s eight surviving participants were present when Clinton made his 1997 apology on behalf of the American people during a ceremony at the White House.

 A participant in the Tuskegee Syphilis Study. (Credit: National Archives)

Known officially as the Tuskegee Study of Untreated Syphilis in the Negro Male, the study began at a time when there was no known treatment for the disease. After being recruited by the promise of free medical care, 600 men originally were enrolled in the project. The participants were primarily sharecroppers, and many had never before visited a doctor. Doctors from the U.S. Public Health Service (PHS), which was running the study, informed the participants—399 men with latent syphilis and a control group of 201 others who were free of the disease—they were being treated for bad blood, a term commonly used in the area at the time to refer to a variety of ailments.

A participant in the Tuskegee Syphilis Study. (Credit: National Archives)

The men were monitored by health workers but only given placebos such as aspirin and mineral supplements, despite the fact penicillin became the recommended treatment for syphilis in 1947. PHS researchers convinced local physicians in Macon County not to treat the participants, and research was done at the Tuskegee Institute (Now called Tuskegee University, the school was founded in 1881 with Booker T. Washington at its first teacher.) In order to track the disease’s full progression, researchers provided no effective care as the men died, went blind or insane or experienced other severe health problems due to their untreated syphilis.
In the mid-1960s, a PHS venereal disease investigator in San Francisco named Peter Buxton found out about the Tuskegee study and expressed his concerns to his superiors that it was unethical. In response, PHS officials formed a committee to review the study but ultimately opted to continue it, with the goal of tracking the participants until all had died, autopsies were performed and the project data could be analyzed. As a result, Buxton leaked the story to a reporter friend, who passed it on to her fellow reporter, Jean Heller of the Associated Press. Heller broke the story in July 1972, prompting public outrage and forcing the study to shut down. By that time, 28 participants had perished from syphilis, 100 more had passed away from related complications, at least 40 spouses had been diagnosed with it and the disease had been passed to 19 children at birth.
A participant in the Tuskegee Syphilis Study. (Credit: National Archives)
In 1973, Congress held hearings on the Tuskegee study and human experiments, and the following year the study’s surviving participants, along with the heirs of those who died, received a $10 million out-of-court settlement. Additionally, new guidelines were issued to protect human subjects in U.S. government-funded research projects. (In 1947, the Nuremberg Code was established in response to Nazi physicians forcibly performing gruesome experiments on prisoners in concentration camps during World War II. The document set forth basic ethical principles for medical research involving human subjects, such as the requirement that a person must give informed consent before participating in an experiment.)

Sunday, May 7, 2017

AMERICA'S NEXT WAR:Why Blacks Should Stay Out Of The Military?

Deric Muhammad speaks on his experience as a Marine. He also shares his opinion on the reason black people shouldn't go to war.