The Curse Has Been Lifted

Thousands - if not millions - of Boston Red Sox fans have believed for the better part of a century that their favorite team was cursed in the early 1900s, when the team owner sold the star player off to the New York Yankees. From that fateful transaction all the way through 2004, Red Sox fans watched helplessly as fate seemingly conspired to destroy their hopes and dreams over and over again.

I have never been a baseball enthusiast, but i do have some family history with being sold. I can attest that having the most talented and beloved members of a family sold away by those claiming "ownership" does indeed have a negative impact on that families ability to function going forward. Also, these effects can extend over generations as the wounds are slow to heal. Congratulations to the Red Sox; here's to hoping that the curse is finally lifted.

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A Day That Will Live In Infamy

Americans chose many different ways to commemorate the third anniversary of the attacks on our nation. Some chose a quiet ceremony, respectfully marking the passage (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5962227/), others chose to ostentatiously declare that despite their failure to protect us in the past, they could do so in the future (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5962986/). I still have not forgotten a single moment of that day - when I arrived to work, how quickly I realized I needed to return home, how difficult it can be to leave an island, how empty the skyline now looked and how the military jets that looked so exciting at air shows could now look so terrifying when on a search and destroy mission. Amidst all of the chatter and the calls for us to realize that 11 September 2001 signified the opening of another front in World War IV (http://www.commentarymagazine.com/podhoretz.htm), I began to ask myself a few, small questions.

Can a group of a few thousand irregular soldiers, ensconced in caves on the other side of the planet really declare war upon the most powerful nation on the planet? Can a mouse declare war upon a lion (http://www.greatbooks.org/library/selections/lion&mouse.shtml)?

Can we really claim to be liberating the Shia from the terrible reign of Saddam Hussein, if we are fighting against them at the same time (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5949556/)? How many of this group we are attempting to save should we kill to avenge the deaths of 2700 of our citizens? Where are the actual perpetrators of the attack and why have they not been dealt with yet.

When I see indiscriminate killing in an attempt to bring democracy to a nation, I hear an echo of earlier indiscriminate killing in an attempt to "civilize" (as if murder were an accepted process for civilization) the original inhabitants of this land (http://www.indigenouspeople.net/gooddead.htm).

When I hear economic rationalizations for this war - our economy depends upon oil, we have to protect our national interests, etc. - I also hear the reverberations of earlier actions we took to initially establish the wealth of this nation (http://www.providence.edu/afro/students/kane/triangle.txt).
Must we really launch another war with no end in sight, solely to protect moneyed interests that run deep amongst the Bush and Kerry clans? Is there no way for this society to build our gleaming towers to the sky except upon the blood of others?

Happy Anniversary.

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Why Do Black Republicans Play This Game?

By now, you have all heard that Alan Keyes has changed his mind and decided that it is okay for someone to run for the US Senate in a state other than that which they commonly reside (Keyes Will Run for Senate in Illinois). What might be news to you is that Keyes has reversed another long-held belief and now supports reparations for the descendents of slaves (Reversal of attitude:
Alan Keyes on reparations
). Feel free to peruse the reading material and then come back to help answer the question of this post: why?

Black Republicans insist that they should be taken seriously, that they have a legitimate and consistent philosophy that will provide better results to Black Americans than the Democratic Party has delivered over the last 40 years. How can they be viewed as anything but a joke (and a sick one) when every "strongly held" belief is tossed aside in service of their masters? Why should we believe their claims of insult when they hear themselves described as house Negroes?

For the record, Alan Keyes was the loudest voice railing against Hillary Clinton being a candidate for US Senate from New York. His claims in 2004 that his run is in no way comparable - Hillary chose NY as she believed she could win there, while IL chose him as they believed in him - is laughable. Let's pretend for a second that I believe a single word this man has ever uttered and that he was right in saying that Ms. Clinton chose NY because she felt she could win that race - what does that really mean? Nothing more than that the people of NY have the same values and goals of a Senator than Ms. Clinton represents. The most significant change she made to run for the office from NY was taking off a Cubs hat and putting on a Yankees hat. Alan Keyes has changed his position on an issue that has strong support within the African-American community (reparations) but one that is far afield from any Republican in national office in the country today. It is so far out of modern Republican political dogma, that it can only be viewed as a blatant attempt to pull some progressive Black voters from Barack Obama. Are their Black people so self-deluded to fall for this feint? There are, but they are already Black Republicans, a very small group indeed.

This blatant shilling for Blacks to vote Republican - regardless of there being absolutely no interest on the part of Republicans to do anything for Black people - is not unique to Mr. Keyes. Every member of this subclass we call "Black Republicans" exhibits this trait and it can be seen in their undying, unyielding loyalty to their white overseers to the obvious detriment of their own blood (and don't let any of them tell you that they are no kin of ours - the one thing slavery has surely done is destroy our family ties). Let's do a quick summary of the examples of this betrayal:

- Clarence Thomas - went to college and graduate school on affirmative action programs, now finds them objectionable.

- Colin Powell - went to Vietnam as an ROTC lieutenant and wrote in his biography of the distaste he had for the wealthy sons who bypassed Vietnam in the National Guard, now he works for the poster boy for keeping his ass out of danger.

- Armstrong Williams - this conservative commentator has made a living critiquing Black people who are not living up to his moral code, but he received his start from that old racist Strom Thurmond - now famous for raping a Black teenager and impregnating her with a daughter he never revealed to the public until after his death. Armstrong kept ol' Strom's secret and has never said one word against him.

One has to hope that the worst Keyes will do to African-Americans is lose to the third Black Senator ever elected since the end of the Reconstruction era, but hope is not a plan. Every person of good-will in this country should put their efforts to ensuring his defeat, but any means necessary.

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Is It Best For Blacks to Divide Our Vote?

Over the hundreds of years of our existence in this country - as well as the preceding centuries as inhabitants of this British colony - one common thread can be found: the desire by those outside our community to divide us one from another. The rationale behind this is obvious and clear: separately, our power is diminished. Indeed, separately, we cannot even discuss "our power" and must face the world as individuals, alone, with no more support than a single individual can claim. Arrayed against the largest empire of the modern world and the republic that has usurped its position around the globe - what can a single individual do? A good case can be made - in more detail than will be allotted here - that the American cult of individuality is the merely a tool of the powerful to disempower the majority of country.

Any person, who sees they have common interests with others - would do well in a democratic society to work in concert with others to achieve their common goals. To claim that Black people - regardless of the variety of African and trans-African cultures from which we originate - do not have common interests is a falsehood. We cannot survive without one another - to whom will we share the cultural traditions that have guided us for thousands of years; from where will we access the basic services we need to live - without others who share those same needs. Or perhaps you expect to have your locks maintained by SuperCuts? The drive - the fight - to have Black doctors, lawyers, police officers, etc. is not merely because we want those who look like us in positions of power and importance. It is because we want those who can look at a Black person and see a human being be the arbiter of our health, our liberty and our protection. For that is the only way we will be able to stand atop the steps to our own homes and not be seen as a terrifying criminal, worthy of being shot down in a hail of 41 bullets.

As a group, African-Americans must decide what our common interests are. Then, we must work together to see those interests area realized. That requires our voting in concert.

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Kuwait: the Siren of the Gulf

A post here last week pontificated, rather adroitly, that Allawi could only be described as a dictator - not a president. It appears that the folks at Newsweek are belatedly awakening to the reality of the situation. Were the stakes not so high, it would be humorous to witness the gears slowly turning in their tiny, tiny heads.

Not to belittle such an august journal of weekly happenings and happenstances, but their analysis is still tepid at best and does not follow the path to the logical conclusions:

  • Iraq is in a state of disorder.
  • A dictator - searching to establish order - must act ever more ruthlessly.
  • Once having shredded every fiber of decency to obtain order, dictators look back with pride and rarely choose to step away from positions of power and subject themselves to the rule of the people they have just subjugated.
  • Having consolidated his dictatorial power at home, dictators routinely look for new challenges to undertake.

That is right, set your clocks folks because it is about to get interesting. Two possible outcomes are vying to become the future of Iraq even as these words are writ, either:

  • Allawi will fail in his efforts to consolidate control over "a country the size of Texas" or
  • Allawi will succeed in his efforts and seek to expand his authority over his neighbors. The prize will most likely be the weakest one: Kuwait.

Never trust any predictions of the future that even hint of real specificity, but I would venture were Allawi to implement his will over the people of Iraq, he will invade Kuwait within two years of having done so.

Wars lead to debt and debt is a harsh master. Debt always has demands and those demands must be fed. Unfortunately, the only way to feed them is through acquisitions by hook or by crook. Having newly become the sole remaining neighborhood power broker, Allawi's US-supplied army will turn its gaze upon a barely more than helpless Kuwait and feel compelled to invade as surely as they did for Hussein.

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And the wheel goes 'round

It has become fashionable of late - post the surprise, early hand-over of power - to claim that this new CIA-sponsored leader is a president and not a dictator. I know that it has been a score of years since my last civics class, but I seem to recall a simple rule of thumb for determining the title of the head of state that went something like this:

- Kings and Queens, appointed by God (so they like to tell us);
- Dictators, appointed by themselves or the powerful;
- Presidents, elected by the people.

Assuming agreement with the above taxonomy, to which of the above groups does ______ Allawi belong?

A - King Allawi?
B - Dictator Allawi?
C - President Allawi?

Others may tell you there is no wrong answer to the questions they pose; sadly, I am not one of those people and this is not one of those questions. Unless a Libyan employee of the United Nations - who was invited to Iraq by the occupying military forces of the United States - can make some claim to being a representative of the voice of the Iraqi people, then there can be no other correct answer than B - Dictator Allawi.

At this point in our lesson for today, extra-credit students will be asking themselves how Saddam Hussein came to power and seeking to find out if there were any anonymous - or at least, soft spoken - power brokers behind his rapid rise. I will give aid to your search by providing three letters: CIA. Those extra-credit students should focus on the parallels between early CIA backing of a Saddam Hussein and early CIA backing of Iyad Allawi. Then, the entire class should ask themselves if we should be glad that Allawi seeks to implement martial law?

Again, this question has only one right answer and that is no. The usurping of the human rights of the Iraqi population once again - this time under the new US-imposed dictator (Allawi) instead of under the previous US-imposed dictator (Hussein) - demonstrates the appalling lack of commitment to the values our US President professes to hold dear.

Where, in all of the praise of the love of "order", are the self-evident truths upon which we created this republic we call the United States of America?

Finally, where is the simple historical understanding that when Hussein came to power, all of the same nice things that are being said about Allawi were said about him: he is bringing order to the nation of Iraq; he is preventing the country from falling under the sway of an even greater evil (then communism, today - who knows - terrorism, Islamism, Baathism?).

Readers of All Panthers Are Black are expected to learn the lessons of the past and not to repeat the failures. After all, how many times will you fall (allow yourself to be led) down the same rabbit (spider?) hole and expect to end up in a different place?

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Hip-Hop's Gender Problem

I read the above article in last week's edition of Black Commentator and I could not agree more the author. How did we get to the point where an African culture could show as much disrespect to our women as Americans do? Taking as a given that not all African cultures are alike and that many African cultures have their own issues with proper treatment of women, is there anyone over the age of 25 who does not look at some of these videos and think, "I was raised to treat women with more respect than this?" How did we come to a place where we not only treat our women as poorly as our former slavemasters did so enthusiastically, but we do so at the same time as we embrace a culture of ignorance as willingly as our current president has so ably demonstrated?

My point is that it is not an accident, that a people who used to fight, die and suffer torture just to learn to read - now contains a huge subclass that thinks learning to read is "acting white". A culture that used to work for years to reunite families spun apart by slavery now fragment before they even begin? Until we formulate a plan to counteract the negative programming that has had a deleterious impact upon us and continues to do so, we will continue to be defeated by our enemies.

So how do we - as Black people - defend our image in this capitalist society, protect our children from falling victim to the negative portrayals of us and prevent them from assuming ownership of these negative images as if they were in actuality true about us? We need to take control over our own images and how they are projected throughout the society. To do this, we need to focus not on the least powerful who are only mimicking the world they see and the images they feel they need to project in order to “keep it real” and instead focus on those who become millionaires (Jay-Z, this means you) and billionaires (Robert Johnson, this means you) by instilling those negative images in our youth.

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What is torture anyway?

Can you help me understand why no one - i.e., no major media outlet reporter with access to question any Bush administration official, but most especially Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld - seems to take the death of at least one Iraqi prisoner in Abu Ghraib very seriously?

I watched a Q&A session that Rumsfeld did last week with reporters and they listened to a five-minute diatribe from the SecDef on how using words like torture to describe what happened at the prison Saddam built to torture people was tantamount to giving aid and comfort to the enemy and the height of irresponsibility. After this lecture, why did not one single reporter ask what is a better word than torture to describe the death of a prisoner at the hands of his captors?

Not only do we have photos of the man killed by US troops while in their custody, we have scenes of those same troops grinning and leering over the body. This is what Rumsfeld describes as abuse? I wonder how the dead man's mother describes it? In an era in which Paul Johnson, Jr. is now a household name, why do we still not know the name of this man killed by his custodians? With the several hundred prisoners released in the days after the photos were made public, is there still any pretense that he was some sort of terrorism suspect? Reporters should be demanding his name and his family should be given equal airtime, if only so we can hear what word they would use to describe having their son taken from home in the middle of the night; their father taken from home in the middle of the night; their brother taken from home in the middle of the night and then beaten to death for sport by foreigners.

30 men in the custody of US soldiers have died over the course of this "war on terror" that the Bush administration has been conducting for the last three years. That is about 10 a year or little less than one a month; Republicans have developed a habit of comparing the "troubles" in Iraq to what you might find in a troubled inner city. Even they might look askance upon one police shooting a month for three years - no matter the city.

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Juneteenth (Man Has Only Those Rights Which He Can Defend)

Wouldn't it be great to be able to play the role of a self-righteous district attorney, where you get to pronounce lofty phrases like the one above on a weekly basis? And what does rhetoric like that have in common with Juneteenth, anyway?

Juneteenth - for the uninitiated - is the day in which African-Americans commemorate our Independence Day. The fourth of July not being a day we choose to recall with the same pomp and pageantry, as from 1776 until the passage of the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments, this declaration, which white folks hold so dear had no meaning for us. But do not take my word for it, the US Supreme Court said so in the Dred Scott case; that a Black person had no rights which the US government need recognize. Perhaps someone should inform mister strict constructionist, Clarence Thomas, that a strict reading of the intent of the founding fathers would mean he would be beaten daily for the temerity he has shown by learning to read.

19 June 1865 is the day that Union soldiers entered Galveston, Texas and informed the Black population of the area about the Emancipation Proclaimation - the somewhat less grand than its title implies document President Lincoln pronounced that manumitted all of the slaves in territory he no longer controlled (oh, so laws like the USA PATRIOT Act have a historical precendent in their hollowness?). Of course, this makes Juneteenth a somewhat less than complete independence day celebration, as all of the slaves in territory Lincoln did controlled were not freed until the aforementioned amendments to the US Constitution were passed, but if anyone is used to celebrating hollow victories, it is us.

For those who cannot see the implications of not knowing you are free until the agents of those who have enslaved you come to tell you and the opening quote from the lead prosecuting attorney on "Law and Order", let me make things clear: what rights can African-Americans claim to have when we have no ability to defend ourselves? How can we claim to be free when our "freedom" was handed to us by a President we did not elect and by soldiers who were merely "following orders"; what shall we do when those orders change? Place the shackles back on our own feet?

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Things that make you go hmm

Was I the only one to notice that at the same time George W. Bush was claiming everything he did up through the age of 40 was a youthful indiscretion, his brother Jeb Bush was trying a 12-year old as an adult?

While I managed to refrain from dancing throughout the apartment, I certainly did not shed a tear for the passing of our 40th president; he never shed a tear for the passing of a single child of Africa did he? How many of us are still feeling the reverberations from his CIA-induced crack epidemic (or just read the book Dark Alliance)? In 1980, cocaine was an expensive drug used by Wall Street types and A-list actors; by the time William Casey received his just desserts, crack was the scourge of every major American city.

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Why Is the US in Haiti?

The above question has consumed me ever since the US forced Aristide into exile earlier this year. What is it about this small island, just a few hundred miles from the coast of Florida that has leaders of the world's most powerful nation obsessed with controlling the fortunes of it's inhabitants?

You could begin with how Haiti followed the US into becoming an independent republic, after the overthrow of a colonial oppressor. Even with that similarity to our path toward freedom, the Haitian republic was not recognized by the architect of our Declaration of Independence and the president at the time of the victory, Thomas Jefferson. For all the heralds we bestow upon him, Jefferson was a man who could not overcome his own slave owner mentality and treat the Haitian freedom fighters with the dignity they deserved. How could he, when he lived under the ever present fear of a slave revolt on his own plantation?

But those events were 200 years ago, so recently celebrated by our Haitian sisters and brothers as they marked the establishment of the world's first Black republic. What could cause the US government to treat with such contempt the first democratically elected leader of Haiti in 1990, Jean-Bertrand Aristide?

Yes, Aristide is someone whom the US cannot control, but why is it so important that the US control Haiti? Again, the country has been impoverished after centuries of struggling beneath the crushing debt demanded by France for the loss of property - the slaves who were my cousins, my aunts and my uncles. Imagine, the thievers of life and liberty demanding to compensated for their crime being thwarted - such gall has never even occurred to people native to the continent of Africa!

Beyond that, the French actually had the collusion of the world's major powers to enact their vile scheme and the debt imposed upon the Haitian people has been traded amongst the European powers and now resides at the US Treasury. Perhaps that is why the US is so interested in Haiti? But is pure greed enough of a motive to stage one coup in the early nineties and then follow it up with a second - after an intervening period of passive-aggressive support for Aristide?

Perhaps, one can never underestimate the greed of the power brokers behind this countries greatest crimes, but there just feels like something more to this story. A few miles of the coast of northwest Haiti lies a nation of unmistakable interest to the US: Cuba. For the last half-century, Cuba has been the principle obsession of the crazed rulers of this nation. The fact that Cuba has survived and thrived throughout armed assaults, economic blockades and relentless propaganda, has driven these mad rulers apoplectic. No longer convinced of the inevitable return of Cuba to its traditional status of under the thumb of US control, Haiti presents an irresistible opportunity to establish a forward base for the final solution to the Cuban problem: invasion.

If the US can travel to the other side of the world to bring democracy to Iraq what can prevent them from doing the same to Cuba?

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It is all politics

Can I get some support in declaring a ban on politicians stating boldly that some issue is too important to "play politics"? This is solely a phrase used to end debate and allow the individual making the statement to go ahead and implement whatever political policy they have in mind.

This is a democracy - or so I have heard - and public debate is central to its proper function.

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Lessons in keeping your eye on the ball

This website is not affiliated with anything or anybody! All of the opinions expressed herein are those of the author - baring any comments posted by third-parties unknown.

I have to wonder if the killers of Nick Berg are wishing they had added a similar tagline to their video, just so they would not constantly be referred to as "an Al Qaeda-affiliated organization." Just what is an Al Qaeda affiliate? Is this somewhat comparable to a franchise, is there some licensing program that one has to go through to obtain this title? I have no idea, but my main question is why do we continue to accept allegations from this - or any administration - as if they were fact?

After all of the blunders of the last year - no WMD, no attempt to obtain "yellow-cake" from Niger, no welcoming with flowers, no easy road to democracy, no funding the rebuilding with oil - why is any assertion not immediately challenged? A few of the questions I might ask, were I a journalist whose sole job it was to ask questions:

- How do you know who those masked men were?
- How do you know with whom they are affiliated?
- What does affiliated mean - money, moral support, post cards?
- Who from Al Qaeda is providing this support and why can we not stop them?

If this is a government of the people, by the people and for the people - does it not behoove us to actively question those whom we have placed in positions of authority?

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We Have To Be Better

One of the interesting angles to explore from the recent publication of the photos of Iraqis being tortured by Americans, is the fact that so many of the torturers are women. Is this what we thought we were getting by opening military service to women?

I am most interesting in this story from the perspective of an African-American: as we gain more power over our own self-determination, will we use that power to enact the same mistakes that were performed by our enslavers? As a corporate functionary, I have asked this question whenever I gather to hear the stories of those African-Americans who have achieved some degree of success. There is an interesting new book, Black Power, Inc. that asks how their success has changed the corporate world. One would hope that we all could learn from mistakes, from failures and from success, so that we can collectively move the world forward.

Progress, it is not just a verb.

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Can't We All Just Get Along?

Can someone tell me why people choose to hate each other? I developed a recent hobby of using IMDB as an online companion to watching movies. During tonight's presentation of "Hannibal", I went online and found the movie details and also found out that production has begun on two separate movies on the historical Hannibal - the African general from Carthage.

I was aware that there is an ongoing war of words on just how black Hannibal was in real life, but I had no idea people many thousands of years later could use this military leader as a reason to hate one another. I guess, if people can war daily over religious leaders - why could they not do the same over battles long since won and lost?

Long introduction to a post I saw by one disgruntled internet user, who was offended that Denzel Washington would even presume to play an African. He included a great deal of content on how much of North Africa was really Caucasian but the only tidbit worth responding to was the link to this 1911 Encyclopedia. My reply to the inanities of this post and the website is included below for your enjoyment.

Black Hannibal?
Not sure if Denzel stole your lunch money back in the third grade or what any actor (correct me if I am wrong, but have white men not portrayed Othello? Why does the actual race of Hannibal have any impact on which actors can play him) could ever do to anyone that would evince such hatred, but your post did inspire a few thoughts worthy of a response.

This post should be used as an example whenever anyone claims that there is no racism left in the world and that we can now live together as brothers. For some reason, people choose to hate other people and I guess we just need to live with that.

Fascinating encyclopedia that you linked us to; the internet is a vast collection and one never truly knows the veracity of the material found across its many pages. I would say that what I found most interesting about the article was its correlation to known practices of racist European colonizers. All across the globe, wherever the colonial spirit urged them to wander, Europeans examined all of the cultures they found and rated them as to how closely they resembled Europeans. The closer a culture was to the practices of Europeans, the more civilized they were perceived and the more respect they were given. Hence, the praise this article heaped upon the Berbers (farmers) and the disdain shown to the Arabs (nomads). Of course, we all know who lived at the top of this pyramid - and still does - but it goes a long way to explaining the reference point once (and apparently still) used to view the world.

If you are truly interested in learning more about this viewpoint and how it continues to cascade throughout the 20th and 21st centuries, you should read up on the roots of the massacres a decade ago in Rwanda. You might find it interesting how their European colonizers (Dutch, in this case) divided the Hutu's and the Tutsi's into that same "closest to European" dynamic and planted a seed that turned two cultures which had lived side-by-side for millennia into a massive genocidal war in just 100 years.

Ah, the power of hate.

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What is the mission of All Panthers Are Black?

What is the mission of All Panthers Are Black?

All Panthers Are Black has some very simple goals, honest goals, with which people of good will anywhere cannot disagree.

1. Freedom to define our own destiny
Seems pretty straight-forward, not much to disagree with here, let's go on to the next one.

2. Full employment
Boy, this one is sure looking good right about now.

3. Retribution for all that was stolen from us
Sounds reasonable, who does not want back that which was taken from them?

4. Decent housing for all
Is this really controversial? What do humans need to live? Food, clothing and - what was that other one?

5. Education
If the above line lists the basics of life, education is surely that which makes life worth living. Who could be against education? Surely not someone reading a web page.

6. Health care
Seems like a pretty obvious one, right? Hard to pursue happiness without being healthy.

7. An end to police brutality
Is anyone really against this? Who is in favor of police brutality? Stand and be counted.

8. An end to wars of aggression
Is anyone still in favor of this? Can we really claim to value human life above all else if we choose to sacrifice life for . . . ?

9. Freedom for all political prisoners
Was not this country founded on this principle? That people should not be imprisoned for their beliefs?

10. Let's just some this up and say, "All of the above"

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Why Do Fools Fall In Love?

Many people find this hard to believe nowadays, but way back in March 2003, this whole "Attack Iraq" thing was supposed to be a cakewalk, with this vaunted military analyst stating that the war and the aftermath could be described thusly:

Measured by any cost-benefit analysis, such an operation would constitute the greatest victory in America's war on terrorism.

Now, with reports that April 2004 is the deadliest month of the year long war and further reports that terrorism is on the rise worldwide (see the comments on Syria and Thailand in this post from the US Department of State - State Department Noon Briefing, 28 April 2004) that pre-war assessment can hardly seem more foolhardy.

Contemporaneously to that assessment offered by a long-tenured military and government employee, was my own, humble assessment on the necessity of the war and the likelihood of it's success:

Herr Goering has a famous quote, in which he discusses how easy it is for leaders to incite the people of their own country to desire a war. Prior to this "Doctrine of Pre-Emptive War" by George W. Bush, the most direct comparison between Goering's post WWII quote and our present day could be learned in a discussion with President George Bush the First, Colin Powell or Stormin' Norman Schwartzkopf in the period shortly before Gulf War I.

Prior to that war, you had a relatively minor military action taken by one country (Iraq) against another country (Kuwait); somewhere on the other side of the world. In most cases, this sort of thing concerns US citizens not a bit (please open your textbooks to Rwanda, Chechnya or East Timor to see how even greater loss of life was resoundingly ignored). However, when this sort of activity takes place near the world's largest known oil reserves, i.e., Saudi Arabia, oilmen (Bush) and Presidents (Bush) are forced into action.

At this point of your hypothetical conversation with the oligarchy of the first Bush reign, you would find yourself listening to speeches about the "Butcher of Baghdad", terrible stories of how poorly Kurds have been treated (you will rarely hear how Turkey was treating its Kurdish population at the very same time) and hearing many horrible stories about what Iraqi soldiers were doing to babies in incubators (This last part a total PR fabrication that has been well documented as a fraud) in Kuwait - the basic dehumanization process that Goering alludes to in his quote (Here is the quote and the foundation for it as well), necessary to get the populace to beat the drums of war - and it would all sound eerily reminiscent of that old WWII villain. You might even raise your head from this fictional conversation with the oligarchy to ask yourself, "Am I being manipulated with a 'big lie' just to obtain my support for aims that do not reflect my values?"

Why did we go to war to restore democracy to Kuwait, when it had never been a democracy before and is not a democracy now? Did we have a treaty with them? Quaint, a treaty with Kuwait obligating us to protect them from invasion would have been a novel idea. Let me sum up the late '80s for you: No, there was no treaty. Not only that, no one even conceived the necessity for such a treaty. Who are Kuwait's neighbors? Iraq, Iran and Saudi Arabia. The kingdom has been our kind of people since it was established in the early 20th century; Iran was still reeling from a bloody war with Iraq (remember them? They were the first country that Saddam attacked. Iran only survived this war by the old WWI technique of throwing bodies – mostly children – at the vastly better armed military forces of Iraq). So that just left Iraq as Kuwait's final neighbor – and they happened to be our ally. Read that again. Our ally. We provided the military assistance and cold hard cash that enabled Saddam to launch his pre-emptive attack on a nation with no territorial desires on his country. Why, old Rumsfeld was so chummy with Saddam that he took photos with him when he traveled to Iraq at the behest of his buddy, Ronald Reagan (another item Ronnie forgot as soon as he was asked – plausible deniability for the old war criminal)

So, resetting the picture: Kuwait was surrounded either friends, nations to weak to be hostile or other US allies; therefore, no treaty.

As an aside: Iraq is now our colony (being led by a military governor is a very 20th century definition of a colony and I am sure that our British friends will be very helpful in providing their expertise with the whole system.) Pre-emptively attacking a nation will further deepen resemblanceence between the US and all of the old colonial powers. Britain saw countries like India, Afghanistan, Ghana and Zimbabwe as a threat when none of them attacked the British and so they ended up a part of the empire. Japan was not attacked by either China or Korea, but they somehow ended up part of Greater Japan. And, of course, the Germans used fig leaves to cover their tracks (tank?) on the Checks and the Poles. Makes you wonder: if my history teacher said pre-emptive attacks were bad then – why are they so good now?

The "relatively minor military action" from above referred to the few hours it took for Iraq to overwhelm the non-existent military forces of Kuwait. This is just another point for why there was no treaty - Kuwait had practically no forces to commit to a treaty.

An easy comparison can be made between the quote from Goering and the actions of the Bush family. And although this nation will be easily led to war, how long will it tolerate the deaths of it's sons and for what will soon be revealed as a lie?

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Shout Outs

So let me return to another inspirational source for this blog. I am sure you have already divined the from the title that the Black Panther Party was and is of importance to me. Starting in the 1960s and running candidates for office well into the 1970s, the Black Panther Party is an excellent example of how issues can begin locally, resonant with a larger audience and expand to impact an entire country, if not the world. Many folks may think the vision of the Black Panther Party is over, or they may think it has something to do with a group calling themselves the New Black Panther Party: nothing could be further from the truth. There is only one Black Panther Party and this is their home on the internet.

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Touchstone Documents

There are many, many places for the source material and inspirational motivation that drive All Panthers Are Black, but two of the most important are a Sunday news magazine, Like It Is, which is shown in the New York City area on ABC 7 at noon and an online weekly webzine Black Commentator.

"Like It Is" has been on the air since 1968 and is an invaluable resource for those interested in the public and political discourse of African-Americans over the last quarter-century. Invaluable as it may be, it has been ill-served by its home network. This is a landmark program and one that would be the centerpiece of any entity with one drop of a progressive spirit.

Black Commentator has a much shorter history - as might be deduced from its internet heritage - but one that shines brightly in the diaspora of Black public opinion. A long time ago, Frederick Douglass called upon those of goodwill to agitate for the end of tyranny; Black Commentator has taken this call as their own and its publishers are striding forth with a clarion call of their own.

Additional places of interest on the internet that everyone should place on their favorites list will be forthcoming.

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Founding Principles

Welcome to All Panthers Are Black, a new blog that presents public commentary from a Black perspective.

This blog sets as its mission to bring the inverse of the title into existence, by any means necessary.

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