I hope our nation realizes that electing a new president was only the beginning of this new way of thinking we need to embrace. With a fierce battle waging between capitalism, socialism , Marxism, racism, terrorism, nationalism – let’s do more than just cross our fingers that the prevailing philosophy will be volunteerism.
Tag Archives: barack obama
Over at the Smoking Gun, they have reported on an MTV interview with Barack Obama about the new ordinance in Riviera Beach, FL banning the “sagging” of pants, a style popular amongst the youth, the skate/surf crowd, and of course, the cause of all of the world’s problems: the hip hop culture.
The big questions for me: is the law against wearing your pants/shorts below what the government determines is your waist, or is the law against the exposure of underwear? If it’s all about the waist, who gets to decide where a 2008 American waistline should be? What if you were wearing gym shorts under your underwear, and just the shorts were seen or exposed? Are underwear really that offensive? Are seeing exposed, multi-colored boxers any different than seeing someone at the beach in board shorts? Don’t we see advertisements with people in their underwear on tv, magazines, billboards, newspapers, and in the mail everyday?
What if you were wearing shorts with extra big and long pockets that could be worn at the waist but are baggy enough they appear you are wearing them 3 inches below the waist? Is seeing underwear worse than seeing someone without a shirt on? What if you were trying to be a good citizen and your belt broke, and you were on your way to the store to purchase a new one? Would you get leniency? I’m not sure of their motives, but I’ve seen women’s attire be far more borderline indecent; I’ve seen people wearing bandanas look far more menacing; and I’ve seen t-shirts with words and sentiments are far more obscene. Correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t I allowed to wear a shirt that says “F*ck You”?
I’m curious how the statute reads. As a rule, all vague laws should be deemed unconstitutional. As a part of our due process in this country derived from the 5th and 14th Amendments:
If a person of ordinary intelligence cannot determine what persons are regulated, what conduct is prohibited, or what punishment may be imposed under a particular law, then the law will be deemed unconstitutionally vague. The U.S. Supreme Court has said that no one may be required at peril of life, liberty, or property to speculate as to the meaning of a penal law. Everyone is entitled to know what the government commands or forbids.
It’s fairly easy to pinpoint laws created to attack particular groups of people whether it’s the youth or black people. I feel everyone has the right to be comfortable in how they dress and choose their own appearance, as long as it isn’t causing harm to another citizen, or violates rules of private businesses or certain places because of the distracting nature (i.e. school, church, etc.) I remember when I was in high school, our administration actually voted and placed a ban on any t-shirts soliciting any association, promotion, or related imagery with Marilyn Manson. At the time, I remember thinking how ridiculous and insane that seemed to me, even as a 16-year old kid who knew very little about life and discrimination – but not caring because it wasn’t an injustice directed towards me. This was also around the same time when my mind started developing realizations that adults were not superheroes – they were just older versions of myself, capable of making the same stupid mistakes, having the same poor judgment, but clouded by preconceived perceptions, outside influences, and how their “neighbors” thought about them.
It’s not the president’s responsibility though to enter in and intervene in municipal politics. That’s what local politicians are for. Those people who oppose such gross misuses of power and government resources should be using their local voice to influence local politicians. Politicians that want to stay in office, do what the people nag them for – and if they know that the spectrum of people who decide if they get re-elected has ballooned, and more people are a part of the political process, then they will be more likely to cater to those groups. I hope people of all color and age, take their involvement in getting Barack Obama elected as a sign that we need to be more involved with politics on every level of government across the whole country.
Hopefully, people will see that for the most part, the things they did to support the presidential election and candidate, were not all that complicated or time-consuming. I’m glad that this election motivated and inspired people to register and join the political process, no matter what they’re reasons for doing so. More voices = more opinions = more chances of finding solutions. If you feel that strongly about it, the great thing about our country is that you can travel down to Riviera Beach, FL and do something about it.
For those of you who have been in a decontamination center: Sarah Palin apparently got caught with her hand in the cookie jar. With the swell of information regarding the 2008 elections, Obama being a “terrorist”, John McCain hating “gooks”, and the economy vaporizing – someone easily could have missed the scandal that the McCain-Palin ticket has worked hard to bury.
Basically, Sarah Palin’s sister married the wrong guy and her governor sister came to her aid when things seemed to spiral beyond her sister’s control. Being the arrogant maverick that she is – she fought back, and basically wanted to show her brother-in-law, who was a State Trooper, who had the most swagger in the state of Alaska. Palin attempted to impose “impermissible pressure…on several subordinates in order to advance a personal agenda” and used her role as governor to cast unethical influence on others to push for the termination of the in-law, and ultimately to fire the subordinates who resisted. And she got caught, and has proceeded to intervene and disrupt the investigation in any way possible – often referring to the legitimate investigation into her as a “circus.
So what is Sarah Palin’s response to the investigation’s findings which showed she was unethical and abused her powers?
“Sometimes the most important thing you need to know about a politician is the frequency and enthusiasm and skill with which they lie to you.” [Note: It’s no longer if they lie, it’s how well they do it.]
The easiest way to verbalize what Mrs. Palin showed us in her responses – is to say – she thinks it is “Opposite Day.” Remember that great childhood game when if you wanted someone to do something, you asked them not to – and if you wanted them to not do something, you begged them for it. What if the politicians involved in Watergate simply said “Finally, the investigation shows we are innocent!”? I’m not sure of the actual power the investigating committee has, but it seems from Palin’s comments that she is playing semantics. Her emphasis in both comments of being cleared of any legal wrongdoing is probably how she justifies with herself that it is in fact NOT lying – but merely pointing out the lack of authority of the committee, who cannot find her legally guilty of anything.
In honor of this great display of undeniable support for the spirit of “Opposite Day” – Sarah Palin, we love you.
I wonder how strategic (if at all) it is for him to create that aura that he would never worry about being labeled a sell-out or ostracized for pointing out stereotypes of every race, and even pinpointing faults with his own sub-culture of our country’s culture. He “gets it” when so many don’t. He gets to be himself, but at the same time look at himself from an outside perspective. From that of the media, from that of the fans. He gets to unwittingly have insight into perception. and instead of taking advantage – he mocks it, plays it down, and humbles every person listening to him in the room, whether intentionally or not.
On hard work via a monologue for his version of his childhood self: “Many people believe that you can succeed against all odds. And i believe that. I believe that the odds are, if you don’t prepare, you won’t succeed.”
Social commentary on gangster epidemic on the black community: “Why spend the next 20 years in jail…”
On the current road to the White House: “Now in real life, Giuliani is like a pitbull…he’s great when you have a burglar, but if you don’t – he just might eat your kids.”
Chatting with Jon Stewart: “There’s this weird McCarthy-ism going on right now.”
When Keeping It Real Goes Right
I also applaud Chris Rock for not falling trap to the #1 problem that so many celebrities, entertainers, famous people do…focusing on themselves, talking about themselves, shameless promotion of…themselves, to the point where it’s ridiculous really. He keeps it real. Can Dave Chappelle give him a “When Keeping It Real Goes Right” award or something? This is why we should value our comedians. It’s rarely about them. It’s about us. What we do. Why we do it. How funny it sounds that we do what we do. I think Chris gets a bad rap when listeners say that he brings too much attention to race in America.
On police propensity to racially profile: “But this is what the cop heard…and he was black, and black black black black black black blackity black-black, and he walked with a black, and black black black…”
On overreactions of white-dominated media: “I always say there’s nothing that comes quicker than white praise or white scorn…and they’re both overreactions.”
Talking About Racism Creates Racism?
I’m glad someone does still reflect on racism in America, rather than everyone floating around on their 2008 high-horse like it wasn’t just a little over 50 years ago that America learned the name, Rosa Parks. Let’s not act like some of the people who perpetrated grave racial injustices are not still alive. Let’s not act like all his been diluted and it’s water under the bridge in just a short time frame stretching just from my grandparent’s generation to my own. Don’t tell me we are an imaginary version of the Wiggles or The Teletubbies where it’s all “I Love You” and “you Love Me.” I’ve watched with my own eyes the glaring reality when my middle-aged mother married her best friend of 20 years who happened to be black. I’ve seen, my grandmother, with just one generation between us, who I would describe as the most devout “Christian” (as far as practicing, I suppose?) I know, go from completely baffled to angry to resentment to uneducated to fearful to distant to intrigued to accepting to once again baffled, but this time about how she could have felt her earlier feelings about someone she has come to love. Thank you, Chris Rock, for being one of my favorite Americans and saying what everyone else is thinking.
Tonite Chris Rock goes back to what made him so popular, his HBO specials. Here’s a preview of where Chris’s mind is at in 2008 in our current world climate. Consider yourself warned: