I know this is completely random and very rarely do I talk about my 9 to 5, but this afternoon I was so excited to I find out that Brad Pitt was inside the building!! Now being that we work in Accounting, my coworkers and I rushed to the area where he was to catch a glimpse and man! The dude looked GOOD! He was sitting at somebody's desk in his blue Pageboy hat, looking so incognito, while a dozen or so women (and a few men) flocked around. We tried to get closer to take photos but the security guards weren't having it. They shut us down real quick and said we could gawk, but NO PHOTOS! DAMN. Either way, it's moments like these that REALLY make me love my fricking job. LOL!
Yesterday was a beautiful moment in not just Black History, but American history. All over the Washington, DC Metro area, I saw people of all races and all genders decked out in all-black in support of the Jena 6. Even on my job, it was a sea of black as we all came into work. I loved how everyone was friendly and smiling as they passed one another. It was exciting to see and I was amped to keep the feeling going. Hell, I even painted my fingernails and toes black (and they will remain that way, until all these brothers are released). This situation is not over. Mychal Bell is STILL in jail despite having his conviction overturned. So I've rounded up various videos regarding this case in hopes that the momentum will keep pushing on... By the way, did ya'll know that David Bowie donated $10,000 to the Jena 6 Defense fund? Man, it's a beautiful thing when we all work together to help one another...
MSNBC reports on how Black bloggers are spreading the word (video here)
For AP Video from Yesterday's rally, go here
"Big Slim" of DC blessed the Jena rally in DC on 9/20 with a spoken word peace he did about not hating the label but loving the people.... (more videos from the DC Rally here)
Two of the Jena 6 speak to Democracy Now - pt 1
Two of the Jena 6 speak to Democracy Now - pt 2
Howard University Response to the Jena 6 - Clip of the Rally ( more videos from the event here)
CNN SPECIAL Report: Judgement In Jena (more video/news reports here)
More videos regarding the Jena 6 can be found here
"Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
- Maya Angelou
Photos from yesterday's events can be found here
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The Headline Reads: Louisiana judge tosses conviction against teen tried as adult (CNN)
This is great news, but don't get it twisted. The fight continues, considering Mychal Bell can STILL be tried in juvenile court. Now although the D.A. has already shown the type of character he possess, I'm praying that he isn't that dumb to continue pushing this case. These young men have gone through enough. I'm sure they know the consequences of their actions and have received a life-long lesson - racism is alive and kicking. And though it has kicked these young men directly, we should all feel the foot of racism on our backs. Freedom ain't free and we can't remain quiet on cases like this. We must stand firm against unequal justice. We must remain vigilant. That's why Michael Baisden and others are still moving forward with the rally on September 20th. Because this is bigger than a fight amongst teens in high school. This case is just a mere snapshot of how unequal our justice system continues to be all over the United States. Shoot, I'm really looking forward to hearing what Bernice King and Martin King III have to say when they appear on CNN this Sunday.
CNN's Suzanne Malveaux will be interviewing Bernice King on Sunday evening (16 September) for this week's "Sunday Spotlight" at approximately 10:30pm ET for CNN Newsroom on the subject of the Jena 6. Malveaux and Ms. King will discuss the recent developments in the Jena 6 case and the planned 20 September rally being organized by Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Al Sharpton and others. The transcript and video of the interview will be posted on cnn.com on Monday… [Source: An email from a CNN director]
Also back on September 7th, Mos Def and Dr. Cornell West appeared on the Bill Mahr show to discuss a variety of issues, including the Jena 6 case. You can watch the show here.
Oh yeah, I was reading CL yesterday, when I heard this great song from Jasiri X. He has two versions of the song (I love'em both), but I'm partial to the dirty south version. Check it out.
"You can only protect your liberties in this world by protecting the other man's freedom. You can only be free if I am free." - Clarence Darrow
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I've finally managed to sober up enough to write about my experience yesterday. I attended my first Musiq Soulchild concert at the Warner Theatre (which I've never been to either) and I had a great time! This was the first time hubby and I were able to go out together since Beyonce's concert. Shoot, we were so excited to hang out that we ended up arriving 45 minutes early. Walking into the theatre, I couldn't stop gawking at how beautiful the place was. Very nice. We ended upstairs next to the bar, watching the floor below fill with beautiful black folks, all dressed to the nines. It wasn't long before my hand was wrapped around a cup full of more vodka than Apple Schnapps and we were heading to our seats. From the inside, I couldn't believe how intimate the setting was.
I love small venues. They allow you to feel so close to the artist. At exactly at 8pm, Musiq hit the stage with his song HalfCrazy. Man, I was AMPED as I sung the lyrics to the song, all the while sipping on my drink. (Sidebar: It was so cool that small snacks and drinks were allowed inside the concert!) Musiq's voice was so clear and crisp. Throughout the concert he did a wonderful job of hitting the right notes with ease. I swear, I don't know how these performers do it. By the time he got to Mary Go Round, my voice was on its' last round, but you know I did not care right? I was going hard with my hoarse voice as he performed one of my favorite songs, Teach Me. Things only got worse when he asked for all the party people to stand up and have a good time, while he cranked out my songs B.U.D.D.Y, Forthenight, and Make You Happy. I quickly drowned the rest of my drink, stood up, and rocked my body to the rhythms. Shoot, I came to have fun and I was not about to put on any airs. Like Musiq said to someone sitting in the front row, 'You clapping your hands and having a good time, why don't you get on up then?' Shoot, I agree Musiq! That is what a concert is all about, just enjoying yourself and boy, did I ever? As a matter of fact, I think it was around this time that the alcohol started working on me. (Sidebar: For the record, I'm very much a functional drinker so no whino behavior here. LOL!) As the only one in my immediate row dancing, I know folks were sick of me. Oh well. At least, I made sure I didn't step on no toes, but that was all I made sure I did. Hell, I didn't sit back down until Musiq started singing some song from his Aijuswanaseing CD. But I do remember his final song of the night, SoulStar. Such a pretty song. The house lights eased up and I stared at my watch. It was 9:32. Damn. Just like that it was over. Unbelievable, but I wasn't going to be mad at Musiq. He did his job and I got what I needed. A good time.
Check out other photos from the event here
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The Headline Reads: Bowie State Student Missing
As a mother, I'm posting this information in hopes that someone, anyone might recognize this young man or know of his whereabouts. Until then, I'm praying for his safe return...
The Prince George’s County Police Department is seeking the public’s help in locating a missing person from Laurel Grove Court.
On September 1, 2007, at approximately 12:00 p.m., 18 year-old Julian Carlos McCormick of the 11200 block of Laurel Grove Court left his college dorm in the 14000 block of Jerico Park Road (Bowie State University) and has not been seen since.
Mr. McCormick is described as a black male, 6’0 and 170 pounds. He was last seen wearing a white t-shirt, blue jean shorts, and black tennis shoes. McCormick was also last seen driving his Blue-Silver 2003 Honda Civic bearing Maryland temporary registration 83870A. McCormick does not suffer from any medical conditions and is not currently under any medication.
You can watch video regarding the case here
UPDATE 9/10/07 10:42AM:Julian Carlos McCormick has been found! Thank the Lord. Apparently, his car went off an embankment and landed upside down. It was hidden from the roadway which explains why he went missing for EIGHT DAYS. My goodness, bless this young man's heart because he is definitely here for a reason! Watch video of regarding his ordeal here.
missingpersons missing Julian Carlos McCormick
The Headline Reads: District's Former First Lady Effi Barry Dies
I'm just stunned. I've always admired this woman's zest for life. May she rest in peace.
The District's former first lady passed away at about 4:30 a.m. Thursday at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, where she was being treated for leukemia. She was 62.
Funeral services are being planned.
Effi Barry was married for 14 years to Marion Barry and played high-profile roles promoting the District during his first terms in office. They had one son, Christopher Barry.
In recent years, Barry used her battle with leukemia to encourage more African-Americans to add their names to registries for bone-marrow transplants.
"This is tragic," said former D.C. Council member H. R. Crawford, a long-time family friend, who was notified of her death.
Update 9/6/07 1:43PM:WaPo has provided a nice photo gallery in memory of Lady Effi here
The Headline Reads: In Error, B-52 Flew Over U.S. With Nuclear-Armed Missiles
So not only should Americans worry about other countries blowing us up, we have to concern ourselves with irresponsible army officials too...
An Air Force B-52 bomber flew across the central United States last week with six cruise missiles armed with nuclear warheads that were mistakenly attached to the airplane's wing, defense officials said yesterday.
The Stratofortress bomber, based at Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota, was transporting a dozen Advanced Cruise Missiles to Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana on Aug. 30. But crews inadvertently loaded half of them with nuclear warheads attached.
Air Force officials said the warheads were not activated and at no time posed a threat to the public. But a timeline of the episode supplied by the Air Force yesterday to House and Senate lawmakers indicated that the missiles in question sat on a runway in Louisiana for nearly 10 hours before workers noticed that the nuclear warheads were inside.
Military officials also said they were concerned that the warheads were unaccounted for several hours while the missiles were in transit. The missiles never left Air Force control, they said.
The cruise missiles -- part of an Air Force fleet of more than 400 of their kind -- are being retired and usually would not carry nuclear warheads while being transported. Defense officials said the B-52's mission last week did not include training runs, so the missiles were never meant to be launched. The cruise missiles have a range of about 2,000 miles and are designed to hit precision targets well behind a potential enemy's lines.
Two defense officials said it is unclear how stringent safeguards for the handling of nuclear weapons were skirted, allowing the missiles with the warheads to be loaded onto a pylon that was then attached to the underside of the B-52's wing. Air Force officials said the mistake was a serious breach of rules and that an investigation began immediately.
Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl M. Levin (D-Mich.) and Sen. John McCain (Ariz.), the panel's ranking Republican, yesterday jointly called the episode "a matter of grave concern" and, in a letter to Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, requested an investigation of the incident by the Pentagon's inspector general.
The aircraft's pilots and other crew members were unaware that they were carrying nuclear warheads, officials said. "Essentially, this is an issue of a departure from our very exacting standards," said Lt. Col. Edward Thomas, an Air Force spokesman at the Pentagon, who declined to confirm that nuclear warheads were involved. "The Air Force maintains the highest standards of safety and precision, so any deviation from these well-established munitions procedures is very serious, and we are responding swiftly."
The incident, first reported by the Military Times, prompted senior leaders to relieve a munitions squadron commander of his duties. Other airmen have been temporarily suspended from duties.
"Nothing like this has ever been reported before, and we have been assured for decades that it was impossible," said Rep. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), co-chairman of the House Bipartisan Task Force on Nonproliferation. "The complete breakdown of the Air Force command and control over enough nuclear weapons to destroy several cities has frightening implications not only for the Air Force, but for the security of our entire nuclear weapons stockpile."
The Air Force's Air Combat Command has ordered a stand-down for its bases next week to review procedures and prevent a repeat of the mistake. "All evidence seems to point to this being an isolated mistake," Thomas said.
Geoff Morrell, a Pentagon spokesman, told reporters at a news conference yesterday that Gates was informed of the incident early last Friday and has been receiving daily progress reports. Morrell said President Bush was also notified.
In a statement yesterday, Rep. Ike Skelton (D-Mo.), chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, said he found the reports "deeply disturbing."
nukes warheads usmilitary
Check out the video for Kanye West's "Can't Tell Me Nothin" featuring Zach Galifianakis and Will Oldham. This joint is so random, but it had me dying...
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The following are various videos and websites that have updated information on the Jena 6 case:
MSNBC: Charges reduced for 2 more in Jena case
Dailykos: Speaks on the issue here
Update 9/6/07 4:04PM:
Yesterday, Howard University students organized a rally for the sake of six black high school students from Jena, Louisiana. Watch video from the event here.
jena6update online activism
While the music world waits with bated breath for the
1. How You Sell Soul To A Soulless People Who Sold Their Soul??? // Lyrics Here - Well, straight out the gate, Chuck D explains the "soul" purpose of their latest album, "WE COME BACK TO DO A SOUL CHECK, EVERY ONCE IN A WHILE LIKE A SONIC MESSIAH, TO FIND OUT THESE CATS, GOT THIS THING RUNNIN WILD..." Indeed, this hip-hop game is all fucked up and interestingly enough I love how Chuck goes on to say... "HIP HOP SAYS YOU CAN BE WHAT YOU WANNA BE AS LONG AS YOU AINT F-A-K-E". Man, that is the T-R-U-T-H! I like this one!
2. Black Is Back // Lyrics Here - Okay, now this is good music. I've had my fair share of the hip hop music of today. I'm totally vibing off this 80s 'call and answer' song. Rock and hip-hop have pretty much made a decent pair and call me a nostalgic sucka, but nothing beats Flava Flav saying "Boyyyy" at the end! LOL!
3. Harder Than You Think - Now who's the big dummy that's questioning the legacy of P.E.? It has to be some young folks because Chuck don't have to answer to NO ONE, but just in case folks were sleepin', Flav starts this track with the intro from one of their classics, Public Enemy #1 and after that, in comes the mind-jolting horns as if to tell the world, "Wake the hell up! P.E. is here and we ain't goin no where". OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LOVE THIS SONG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I gotta catch my breath just to absorb all the energy that comes out of this joint. I'm so close to shedding a tear. I mean, I seriously miss this type of music. It is indeed a beautiful thing when a song can feel you up with so much pride and emotion. Shoot, you can't help but to get up!
4. Between Hard In A Rock Place - Man, P.E has always been known for using soundbites at just the right time and at the end of this 60 sec intro there's this little gem, "Let's remember that our greatest allies ,in this battle to save the lives of several million at risk adolescent boys and girls, are the other adolescent boys and girls, who are not at risk." Indeed. Each one must teach one.
5. Sex, Drugs And Violence (Featuring Krs-One) - Some children are present on this track to remind you that "we like those gangster rhymes, just make sure they don't corrupt our minds..." Now, of course, I love the message in this song and it's painful how the murders of Jam Master Jay and Tupac are still unresolved, yet the kids on the chorus kinda put me off a bit. I mean, I don't why I have images of those Village of the Damned kids. LOL! Hey, I suppose that was the point with their zombie like voices. To make us think about how dead we are to what is really being said in these rap songs.
6. Amerikan Gangster (Featuring E.Infinite) - I like the beat behind this one, but for some reason this track doesn't sound as cohesive as the previous songs. And I swear, the dude saying the chorus sounds like a sleepy Fiddy. NEXT.
7. Can You Hear Me Now - Loud and clear. Definitely like this.
8. Head Wide Shut - This track is a short mixture of beats and soundbites. It's MURDER!
9. Flavor Man - Oh how nice, they made room for Flav to scream his annoying Flava, Flava Man in my ear. This joint is a little funny, but I'll pass. NEXT!
10. The Enemy Battle Hymn Of Public // Lyrics here - P.E. devotes this song to the current mess we are in stateside and over in Iraq. I'm feeling this.
11. Escapism // Lyrics here - P.E. did a good job with conveying the confusion of our world with this track. The beat has all these elements in it that make me feel like all things media (TV, radio, etc.) are closing in on me. Nice.
12. Frankenstar - This track brings back the energy felt in the very beginning of this CD and once again, rock and hip hop marry each other on this joint that has Chuck and Flav yelling, FRANKENSTAR, YOU DONT EVEN KNOW WHO THE HELL YOU ARE. I DONT GIVE A DAMN ABOUT YOUR CAR, FRANKENSTAR! Yeah, I like this cause frankly there's a lot more to talk about than celebrities all freakin day.
13. Col-Leepin - LMAO! Um, no. I love you Flav, but slow your roll and get back in your lane. Stick to being the hype man because this is just retarded!!!! Damn, I couldn't even listen to the whole thing. NEXT!
14. Radiation Of Radiotvmovie Nation - Another short track of beats and soundbites focusing on racism.
15. See Something, Say Something// Lyrics here - Okay, I like this joint which speaks on the whole "snitching" issue. Chuck lets it be known that if you see something, you betta say something cause "DONT GET IT TWISTED DONT GET IT CONFUSED, THE TERM SNITCH, REVOLUTIONARIES USE, WHEN THE GOVERNMENT GOT THE HOOD RHYMIN THE BLUES, THATS THE TERM WHEN THE WHOLE TOWN LOSE". I agree P.E.!
16. Long And Whining Road // Lyrics here - YA BOYYY!! Nice track and again I ask, who the hell is hating on this group?!? Foolishness, the industry, correction, the world NEEDS this kind of music.
17. Bridge Of Pain - Okay, Flav gets serious on this track and speaks on his previous stints in jail and how he's had to cross the bridge of pain numerous times. I likes this and it's cool that he doesn't have to go completely dumb on every track.
18. Eve Of Destruction - Damn, Chuck asks can you feel the fear today? And I'd have to say YES! This track is weird, but it does it's job of draining your soul of any hope that this world is going to get any better. Personally, I'm a realist so I understand where Chuck is going with this.
19. How To Sell Soul (Time Is God Refrain) - SOUL POWER! This track is on point and quite inspiring especially in this overly materialistic world we live in. Time is indeed precious.
20. Harder Than You Think (Remix) - Nice remix, but nothing beats the hard-pounding original which is my personal fave!
Overall: I don't give a DAMN what anybody has to say about ANY of the members of this crew, this album was good. Real good. And though I doubt that P.E. won't reach the top of the RIAA-controlled Billboard charts, they damn sure need not to be regarded as ancient hip hop relics. These dudes are our modern day Paul Reeves, still sounding the alarm on commercialized rap. Or betta yet, slapping fools upside the head with some necessary knowledge. I mean, aren't folks threw with hanging at the bar with T-Pain? Or listening to Joc talk all day about his wack ass Coffee Shop? Or hell, you gotta be tired of crankin dat Souljah Boy by now? Shoot, it's alright to have a good time, but by what and who's expense? At some point, you gotta keep those brain cells fresh and Public Enemy's album gives you much to ponder. I suppose that's what they were getting at when they asked, How You Sell Soul... You don't. You make the soulless really think of what lies lay within and just maybe, they'll want to regain their soul on their own.
Favorite Tracks: How You Sell Soul To A Soulless People Who Sold Their Soul???, Black Is Back, Harder Than You Think, Escapism , and See Something, Say Something
Harder Than You Think (Classic Concert Footage Version)
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