Thursday, December 8, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Activities Report for January 1946

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
December 8, 2011


                    































Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Letter to the Editor of the University of Virginia Alumni Association Magazine, Fall 2011, Titled: Food Talk

Black Buzz News Service
Charlottesville, VA
December 1, 2011

["Consequences of Dinner," Summer, 2011] was a very informative and well-researched article.  My parents owned a chicken store in Pittsburgh in the late 1940's, and we fed our chickens only certified natural corn feed, soybean mash and fish meal.  We also gave our hens a high concentration of calcium, plus oyster shells, and gave the  chicks only certified purified water.  We never let our chickens eat scraps and their diet didn't contain hormones or antibiotics.  Chicks came from a farm that didn't use pesticides or commercial fertilizers and the entire environment where we kept the chickens was spic-and-span.  My mother would bake, broil, fry, grill and roast her chickens.  They were the most tender and tasty birds I have ever eaten.

                                                                               Ronald B. Saunders
                                                                               Scarsdale, New York

HOLDING AMERICA AND OBAMA ACCOUNTABLE: CRAFTING A PROTOCOL AND PRACTICE — PART I

Black Buzz News Service
Mound Bayou, MS
December 1, 2011

Los Angeles Sentinel, 11-24-11, p.A7
D
R. MAULANA KARENGA


     In the precise measure that a people perceives themselves as their own liberator and realizes that no leader or ally is a substitute for their own work and struggle to lift themselves up and advance forward, that people begins to open a critical path in history to a new, upward and uplifting way of living and being human in the world. Likewise, in the precise measure that a people advances and practices without exception or excuse the principle that no leader, person, people or society is exempt from rightful criticism and accountability, that people rejects an immoral silence in the face of evil, and demonstrates the praiseworthy capacity for self- and social criticism, indispensable and morally compelling for correction of errors, evils and flaws humans are known for.
     We are at a particularly critical juncture in our history as a people and in the history of this country, a juncture at which the policies and functioning of this society are palpably and patently harmful to its people and itself, as well as to the world. And yet, we are told and made to feel we cannot criticize it without being condemned ourselves, considered unpatriotic and disloyal, and as offering aid and ammunition to a long list of real and imagined enemies and thus a potential, if not real, "person of interest" by the police and intelligence agencies of the country.
     And for us, as a people, it gets even deeper and more complex and problematic. For we are also given similar restrictions concerning criticism of the country’s leader, President Obama, from within the African American community. Clearly, we cannot blame U.S. history on Obama or be unmindful of his efforts to "promote the general welfare." Certainly, he inherited chaos, corruption, wars, waste, the progressive erosion of civil and human rights, shameless deference to the rich and disdain for the poor, and a host of other problems too numerous to name. Indeed, Obama campaigned and came to power condemning and calling into question all these ills. Now that he is at the head and helm of the country, he must also accept a just measure of responsibility for the way the country is moving since he has been president, regardless of obstacles and opposition.
     Surely, we recognize that the Republicans, Tea Partiers and other rightists have dedicated their political lives to ensuring Obama’s failure and humiliation for both
     And, of course, we as an African people bear a special share of the responsibility for not seriously holding the country, Congress, and the President accountable as is our tradition, and for not rebuilding our Movement to ensure and increase our capacity to do this and truly transform society. Surely, it is our special and unique responsibility as a people, who have since our arrival in this country served as a moral and social vanguard, to uphold in thought, speech and practice our ancient and ongoing social justice tradition. Politicians, administrations, governments and even allies come and go, but our moral obligation rooted in and expressed through our social justice tradition and the righteous struggle we wage to honor it, keep it alive and advance forward in the interest of our people, this country and the world are indispensable and enduring. some of what the American government is doing here in this country and around the world. Indeed, to claim he is not responsible is to claim he is not the leader, only a pathetic puppet, a role which he and all his advocates will vociferously deny and denounce. not practice these himself. And he also has the moral responsibility to do what he can through the authority and power of his office in the resistance to evil and wrong in the world and in advancing good. Moreover, he cannot adopt the policies, practices and personnel of the right and then ask for special exemption or brotherly and sisterly understanding, because of their relentless savage and racist attacks on him. imploding from within or being exploited from without. Thus, there is an urgent need to craft a protocol of exchange among ourselves that offers a framework in which we can conduct our conversations in the most meaningful, measured and fruitful way. about us, about how we see and assert ourselves as a people, if we are to honor our history, improve the current conditions of our lives and forge a future reflective of the highest African and human ideals and aspirations. 
      President Barack Obama called on us and all Americans to join him in winning leadership of this country and we, as a people gave him over 95% of our support and approval. He is now the country’s leader and thus, neither he nor we can rightfully claim he is not responsible for at least
     Likewise, to claim to be its leader and to have no responsibility for the course of this country at home and abroad is to deny his role as a moral agent, a human being capable of distinguishing right and wrong and acting accordingly. For regardless of his ability or inability to pass bills, overcome right-wing opposition and control his party or raise them from their supine position of silent and submissive reception of rightist aggressive assertions, he still has the moral responsibility to, at least, speak out against injustice, oppression and exploitation, war, waste and other wrongs and
     The coming election will no doubt compel us to discuss President Obama in ways and to an extent we have not done before, especially what he really means to us as a people, and our increasingly diverging views on what he has done or has not done for us, the country and the world. But we must be careful to do this without
     This means always being mindful of the fact that in a larger sense, this needed conversation is not simply about Obama or the election, but
racial and political "reasons." And thus, they share no small measure of responsibility for the crisis in this country, as well as the Democrats, liberals, and leftists, who offered Obama little public aid or advice to check or challenge these "wild west" and "savage south" opponents. Likewise, those of us, progressive intellectuals, activists and concerned citizens alike, who conveniently or unconsciously confused Obama the man for the Movement, itself, and refused to build a Movement and hold him accountable and aid him in keeping the campaign promises as he, himself, had asked, clearly share responsibility for many of those things which have gone grossly wrong and are in dire need of being set right.


Dr. Maulana Karenga, Professor and Chair of Africana Studies, California State University-Long Beach; Executive Director, African American Cultural Center (Us); Creator of Kwanzaa; and author of Kwanzaa: A Celebration of Family, Community and Culture and Introduction to Black Studies, 4th Edition, www.MaulanaKarenga.org.

U.Va. student project aims to allow women in combat

Black Buzz News Service
Charlottesville, VA
December 1, 2011

Tally Parham, shown at right in 2003, flew combat missions in Iraq. Now, as a lawyer, she is the lead counsel for The Molly Pitcher Project at the University of Virginia. <span class='credit'>(Staff Sgt. Derrick C. Goode | U.S. Air Force)</span> 
Tally Parham, shown at right in 2003, flew combat missions in Iraq. Now, as a lawyer, she is the lead counsel for The Molly Pitcher Project at the University of Virginia. (Staff Sgt. Derrick C. Goode | U.S. Air Force)
By Kate Wiltrout
The Virginian-Pilot
© November 27, 2011
Four University of Virginia law school students - assisted by a professor and a high-flying law school alum - are gearing up to fight for the right of women to serve in combat, and they're interested in finding women in the military who want to join them.

Their effort, dubbed The Molly Pitcher Project, seeks to end military policies that categorically bar women from serving in units engaging in direct ground combat. The project takes its name from the woman who took over loading and firing a cannon after her husband fell ill during a Revolutionary War battle.

In the 1990s, Congress repealed laws banning women from flying combat aircraft and serving on warships. But positions in infantry and armor units, as well as special operations, are still off-limits. Earlier this year, a congressionally mandated commission recommended lifting all combat restrictions; Pentagon leaders are studying the issue and are expected to report back to Congress on the issue soon.

Kyle Mallinak is one of the second-year law students inspired to work for change after discussing the issue in a law and public policy class last spring.

He emphasized that the aim isn't to change physical fitness standards or establish a quota for women. The goal is to allow women who meet the military's standards to serve in any job. Women make up about 15 percent of the active-duty military.

"This is not about diversity at its core. It's not about a belief that we need a certain amount of women in everything," Mallinak said. "It's about individual dignity."

Anne Coughlin, the professor who taught the course and serves as a sponsor for the project, said women should be allowed to compete for jobs in elite units.

"We're not asking for special privileges, but if there are women who are fit and want to step up, the military should allow them," Coughlin said.

The military acknowledges that it can't operate in combat theaters without women in the ranks, Coughlin said, noting that in Iraq and Afghanistan, women have been killed in action and some have been awarded prestigious medals for bravery under fire.

"What we're just asking them to do is acknowledge, formally, publicly, honorably, what these women are doing," Coughlin said.

The Pentagon could propose that women be allowed to serve in some or all billets that are currently off-limits. Gen. Ray Odierno, the Army's chief of staff, has said he would like to see more jobs in combat battalions open to women, though he has stopped short of calling for an end to all gender-based limits.

The Pentagon could decide to change its policies on women in combat without congressional approval - doing so would require only notifying lawmakers. That's different from the landmark decision this year to allow openly gay men and women to serve in the military, a change that required Congress' support.

Another way to end the restrictions would be to challenge them in court as unconstitutional.

"It would be perfectly fine for us to never see a courtroom," Mallinak said, "But given the glacial pace that change comes at the Pentagon, we'd want to be prepared to litigate if necessary."

That's where Tally Parham comes in. Parham, who graduated from U.Va.'s law school in 1996, recently agreed to serve as lead counsel for The Molly Pitcher Project. An attorney in Columbia, S.C., she also knows a thing or two about serving in combat: as an F-16 pilot with the South Carolina Air National Guard, Parham flew air strikes in Iraq in the opening days of the war in 2003.

"I think the No. 1 test for the composition of any military fighting force is, what enhances combat effectiveness? What enhances military readiness?" Parham said. The most important individual traits for military success are skill, courage, determination and discipline, she said. "We've proven over and over and over again, none of those qualities are gender-specific."

Although Parham continues to serve in the Guard, she's involved in The Molly Pitcher Project as a lawyer and private citizen, and is working on the effort pro bono.

She said she understands that women on active duty, especially young ones, might not want to make waves by talking about what they can't do in the military. As a young pilot trying to prove herself, she said, she tried to stay away from discussions about gender and simply focused on doing her job as well as she could.

"I'd always hoped that at the point where we had large numbers of women in the leadership, change would just naturally occur," Parham said.

But that hasn't happened, so it's time to do more, she said.

"If there are women out there who are willing to challenge these issues of unfairness, then I'm happy to be their advocate."

Kate Wiltrout, (757) 446-2629, kate.wiltrout@pilotonline.com

Commentary of the Black Buzz News Service.

The  Black Buzz News Service supports the ideas and concepts in the Molly Pitcher Project by four University of Virginia law school students,  a law school faculty member, and the highly distinguished lead counsel Tally Parham.

We believe that as citizens of the United States of America, females should enjoy all the rights and privileges enumerated in the FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT of the United States Constitution.

Wherein the practice of barring women solely on the basis of their sex from certain combat roles in the United States Military which is supported by public tax dollars appears to be a blatant violation of the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

It is also our position that there shall by no restrictions/prohibitions on females serving in any combat role or capacity in all branches of the United States Armed Forces including the NAVY SEALS, DELTA FORCE, ARMY RANGERS, SPECIAL FORCES in the Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, Marines and Navy.

The physical fitness readiness standards in all training for combat military positions should be the same for women as men in all branches of the United States Military Armed Forces. The United States Military should  not be required to make a reasonable accommodation for women in their efforts to integrate women into all combat positions in said forces.
Women should have to meet the same high standards and physical qualifications as men without any exceptions for all combat positions in said military.
 A good efficient soldier must have the following characteristics in order to be effective:
1.  High level of Skill
2.  Great Courage
3.  Great Determination
4.  Great Discipline

* Any lowering of the physical fitness readiness standards solely on the basis of sex will harm the efficiency standards that are needed to accomplish  the mission of the United States Armed Forces.
Further we believe that women should be given the right and opportunity to succeed or fail on their own accord for any combat position in any branch of the United States Armed Forces.

                                                       By Ronald B. Saunders


Saturday, November 12, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: December 2, 1947 Article from the Pittsburgh Courier Titled: Students Offer Plan To Renovate Hill City

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Porject
Robinson Family Archives
November 12, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: 1946 Article from the Pittsburgh Courier titled: New Training Course Starts At Hill City

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
November 12, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: 1946 Article from the Pittsburgh Courier titled: New Sports Club Founded For Boys in Hill District

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
November 12, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Rare Photograph of James S. Robinson, Jr. Checking Over a Collection of Dangerous Weapons Confiscated by Hill City Officers from Offenders

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
November 12, 2011

Center Avenue YMCA Pittsburgh, PA History: Article from the Pittsburgh Courier, 1946 "Gay Northeasterners Plan Splash Party

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
November 12, 2011


Note that the use of "Gay" in the title of the organization did not denote in the 1940's, a special type of sexual orientation, lifestyle or behavior.
Director of Hill City Municipality, James S. Robinson, Jr. and his aides provided security for the above event.


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Shorter University in Rome, Georgia Requires Employees to Sign a Statement Rejecting Homosexuality

BLACK BUZZ NEWS SERVICE
Athens, Georgia
November 9, 2011
BBNS

Rome... Shorter University, a Southern Baptist/ Georgia Baptist Convention affiliated institution in Rome, Georgia recently began requiring employees to sign a "personal lifestyle statement" saying they are not gay, or risk being fired, according to news reports. Further the statement adopted on October 21st requires employees to affirm that they reject "all sexual activity not in agreement with the Holy Bible, including, but not limited to, premartial sex, adultery and homosexuality."
May I suggest that said Shorter Institution also include in that lifestyle statement "pedophilia".
Shorter University is a religious institution and under the United States Constitution they do in fact have a right to practice all the tenets of their faith beliefs, regardless of how repugnant those beliefs may be perceived or appear to individuals outside of their faith community.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Newspaper Article from the Pittsburgh Courier Titled: Santa Will Drop Gift Into Every Chimney

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
November 6, 2011




























Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Executive Staff Photo 1946

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
November 6, 2011


From left to right: Pronty Ford, assistant director, James S. Robinson, Jr., director, Jean Swan, secretary, Raymond Harris, band director


Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Newspaper Article from the Pittsburgh Courier Titled: Sleuths 'Do Drop In' HILL CITY, POLICE RAID NITE SPOT, January 20, 1945

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr, Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
November 6, 2011


Thursday, November 3, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Picture of Billy Speelman Riding on His Horse, "Parson" in the First Pittsburgh Indoor Horse Show Held for the Benefit of Hill City

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
November 3, 2011

Picture featured in the Pittsburgh Sunday SUN-TELEGRAPH  Jan.21, 1945

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Rare Photo of Pittsburgh's First Indoor Horse Show which was Held for the Benefit of Hill City

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
November 3, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Letter from Irving K. Furst Per the Direction of Eliot Ness, Director of the Division of Social Protection

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives and Collection of Papers
Pittsburgh, PA
November 3, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Rare Photo of Ladies' Auxiliary of Hill City and Executive Staff

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
November 3, 2011


Pictured in the back row are staff of the Hill City Youth Municipality.  From left to right: Pronty Ford, James S. Robinson, Jr, director, Jean Swan and James Williams, assistant director.
The public's assistance is requested to help identify any of the members of the Ladies' Auxiliary.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Photo of Staff and Volunteers, 1947

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
October 17, 2011

James S. Robinson, Jr. standing in center; Raymond Harris, band leader is on the far right.
Others pictured are not identified.

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: What It Is, What It Does, How It Affects You

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
October 17, 2011

Obama and Bush Administrations Complicit With Bankers’ in Massive Foreclosure Scheme

Black Buzz News Service
Silver Spring, MD
October 17, 2011

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
The robo-signers kept stealing as a matter of routine, while the Obama administration pretended it was on the side of the people.”
Both the Bush and the Obama administrations are complicit in the gargantuan and ongoing corporate conspiracy to unlawfully foreclose on the homes of millions of Americans. The U.S. government, through its quasi-private housing corporation Fannie Mae and the Federal Housing Finance Agency, which is supposed to oversee the millions of mortgages guaranteed by Fannie Mae, collaborated in the so-called “robo-signing” scheme [5] that has allowed banks to repossess homes without proof they own the mortgages to the houses.
That’s the scenario that emerges from a new report [6] by the Inspector General of the Federal Housing Agency. It is an indictment of the clear complicity of two administrations – one Republican, the other Democratic – in the total abrogation of the rule of law as it pertains to Wall Street. The report shows that the Bush administration was made aware, back in 2003 that banks were engaged in wholesale fraud and theft of properties of American homeowners. The housing bubble had not yet burst, but the banks were gobbling up properties, especially defaulted sub-prime mortgages that had been targeted at Blacks and Latinos. But, because of the banks own practices of bundling mortgages into securities and then immediately passing them on to suckers down the line, the banks did not have clear title to the properties. They sold them anyway by forging signatures by the millions. Theft and fraud were standard practice on Wall Street, and both the Bush and Obama administrations knew it, and protected the bankster criminals. Law firms did much of the criminal dirty work. At least one legal outfit in Florida processed 75,000 robo-signed signatures a year for Fannie Mae.
It is an indictment of the clear complicity of two administrations – one Republican, the other Democratic – in the total abrogation of the rule of law as it pertains to Wall Street.”
The Bush administration was alerted to these activities eight years ago, but did nothing. And, after Fannie Mae became bankrupt and was absorbed [7] into the federal government in 2008, the Obama administration continued to protect the Wall Street conspirators. The robo-signers kept stealing as a matter of routine, while the Obama administration pretended it was on the side of the people by launching what it promised would be a $50 billion Home Affordable Modification Program. It was all a sham. Relatively few [8] homeowners were saved. The reason was that the Obama administration’s priority was the same as the Bush administration’s had been: to smooth the process by which the banks could clear up foreclosures and pass the bad paper on to the federal government, putting the people’s bank account deeper and deeper in the red.
The robo-signers kept signing, and they are still at it, with the full protection of the Obama administration. The Inspector General of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, who issued the damning reports, says the agency still claims to be deciding what to do about the robo-signers, eight years later. The agency issued a statement that it would do something by September of 2012 - just before the presidential election.
To apologize for President Obama by claiming that he “inherited” the housing mess from George Bush is like saying that Al Capone inherited his criminal enterprises from previous gangsters. Obama is just as much a conspirator with Wall Street as Bush, and he has signaled he intends to keep the mega-crime going right up till Election Day. He's a gangster, pure and simple.
For Black Agenda Radio, I'm Glen Ford. On the web, to go BlackAgendareport.com.
BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com [9].
http://traffic.libsyn.com/blackagendareport/20111005_gf_FannieMaeRoboSign.mp3

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Photo of Volunteer Leading Girl Scouts of Troop 484 Hill City

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
October 15, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Photo of Halloween Costume Winners, 1946

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
October 15, 2011

Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Photo of the Great Hill City Marching Band

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
October 15, 2011


Raymond Harris is shown standing on the right.  Mr. Harris was the famous band director of Hill City.


Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, Pa: Photo of a Judge in Court Proceedings, January 16, 1947

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
October 15, 2011



Hill City staff members on left: Jean Swan sitting down, behind Ms. Swan is Pronty Ford.  Remaining pictured are: Allegheny County Bar Association members, the Hill City Court Judge and Hill City Youth Municipality prosecutors and the Hill City Youth public defenders.


Hill City Youth Municipality Pittsburgh, PA: Photo of the Hill City Court in Recess

Black Buzz News Service
James S. Robinson, Jr. Project
Robinson Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
October 15, 2011

The National Black Political Caucus Pittsburgh PA, Picture of Ronald B. Saunders of the NBPC Who Recruited Alphonso Jackson for the position of Director of Public Safety for the City of Pittsburgh PA.

Black Buzz News Service
Ronald B. Saunders Project
Saunders Family Archives
Pittsburgh, PA
October 15, 2011


The City of Pittsburgh did not hire Alphonso Jackson as the Public Safety Director, a position he held with the City of St. Louis.  This is the same Alphonso Jackson who later served as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) under President George W. Bush.

Monday, October 10, 2011

The New State Voter Photo ID Suppression Laws

·   
Black Buzz News Service
Selma, Alabama
October 10, 2011

    The new State Voter Photo ID Laws passed in various States are a major civil rights issue that should receive top priority from the United States Justice Department, the NAACP Legal Defense Fund and other public interest legal organizations who are sensitive to the legal issues raised in this overt abuse of State power.
    All of these GOP Voter Photo ID Laws are designed to limit, curtail, stop a certain demographics from exercising their right to vote in the 2012 presidential election.
    Even though we presently live in a plutocracy, we do have some democratic elements that have been in place since the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, one of which is a citizen's fundamental right to vote.  For any State within the jurisdiction of the United States to suppress in any manner the most fundamental right of a citizen in exercising their right to vote is nothing but unadulterated tyranny, which must be defeated at all cost.
  The Brennan Center for Justice, at the NYU School of Law announced the following States have passed New Voter ID Laws in their 2011 legislative sessions:
1. Alabama
2. Kansas
3. Rhode Island
4. South Carolina
5. Tennessee
6. Texas
7. Wisconsin
  Further, the Brennan Center for Justice states that studies show that as many as 12% of eligible voters do not have government issued photo ID, that the percentage is even higher for seniors, people of color, people with disabilities, low-income voters and students. The studies also show that many citizens find it hard to obtain a government photo ID because the underlying documentation such as a birth certificate needed for a photo ID is very difficult and expensive to come by for many of voters.

  It also appears that the new State voter photo ID laws will have an adverse effect and disparate impact on African American voters.
 On September 8, 2011, the United States Senate Judiciary Sub-Committee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights held a hearing on the suppressive effects of the photo ID laws. Was this U.S. Senate hearing all about show and pizzazz or will these U.S. Senators finally show some courage and determination to address this new camouflaged James Crow voter photo ID Laws?
  The hypocritical US propaganda apparatus has the gall and audacity to go around the world lecturing other countries about the benefits of democracy when they can't stand on the right side of justice and practice what they preach in their own backyard. 
  According to Solomon Commissiong, activist, educator at the University of Maryland, College Park (and I concur): "the same US propaganda machine has fooled many more into thinking that America stands as a beacon of freedom, justice and equality."  Solomon further states that one of the most reprehensible myths propagated by the US government is that it is a nation that delivers "democracy to nations allegedly under autocratic rule."

  The GOP has declared war against at least a million voters who will be disenfranchised if these biased new voter ID laws remain on the books.

  The way you win a war is to have the right game plan, right strategy and a zillion foot soldiers who are committed to victory at all cost. One's game plan must be clear, concise and coherent. Either we are part of the solution or part of the problem. This is really the time to put on our marching shoes and use other items that are germane in our arsenal of weapons in beating these new voter photo ID laws. 
 One should always remember the biggest weapon we have is our mind and NO one can take that away.
 Although the issues raised in the Occupy Wall Street Movement are vitally important to many Americans, interfering and obstructing an American citizen's right to vote should take priority over any other matter at the present time.
  It is very unfortunate that we do not have any credible or accountable national Civil Rights leaders who can galvanize, organize or develop a comprehensive game plan in concert with the Occupy Wall Street Movement in order to defeat these new James Crow III State Voter Photo ID Suppression Laws.
  This is not the time for Black people, young people or other people of color to remain on the sidelines when there is plenty of hard work to do in defeating James Crow III.
   I do remember at the height of the Civil Rights Movement in the late 1960's and early 1970's that most Black folks sat on the sidelines while important history was being made. What will we do this time? This is the time for citizens to be engaged not outraged.

 The cowards within the ranks of the Grand Ole Party and Tea Party may say that these new laws have nothing to do with the 2012 presidential election, but in essence they have everything to do with the 2012 election.  One must ask the question why didn't the GOP in the subject States enact these restrictive voter suppression laws when William Jefferson Clinton was seeking a second term in the White House in 1996?  If these new Voter Photo ID Laws are not about race and class, then what must one conclude?
    What is the intent of these Voter Photo ID Law? What is the motivation of these new Voter Photo ID Laws?  Is defeating Barack Obama at all costs coupled with a big dose of old fashioned 21st century racism masked as State's Rights the motivation of these new Voter Photo ID Laws?  The new Voter Photo ID Laws are nothing but a modern day poll tax designed to limit young voters, the elderly, poor Blacks and other poor people of color who as we know came out in droves in the 2008 election.
  The United States of America is indeed ripe for an Arab Spring, and the voters must wake up and seize the time or we may be relegated to a position of secondary consideration in a country that has the one percent  elites owning/controlling 42-44 percent of the actual financial wealth in the United States and whose sole mission is maintenance of the status quo.

  Power To The People Who Know How To Use It


     
      



Thursday, October 6, 2011

The Saunders Family Enjoy a Pleasant Outing in Colonial Williamsburg

Black Buzz News Service
Ronald B. Saunders Project
Saunders Archives
Big Stone Gap, Virginia
October 6, 2011


From left to right: Thomas J. Saunders, TJ Saunders III, Mina Saunders and Janey Lee Saunders


Sunday, October 2, 2011

No Peace or Justice in Our Time with Netanyahu

Black Buzz News Service
Marblehead, Massachusetts
October 2, 2011

by Stephen Lendman

Like his Washington paymaster/partner, Netanyahu deplores peace. Initiating talks never worked before and won’t now.

Speaking privately at the Clinton Global Initiative conference in New York, Bill Clinton said Netanyahu lost interest because Palestine has a president he controls, and normalizing relations with the Arab world is within reach.

“The Israelis always wanted two things that once it turned out they had,” he said, it didn’t seem so appealing to Mr. Netanuahu.”

Israel believes it has a reliable “Palestinian government, and there’s no question – and the Netanyahu government has said – that this is the finest Palestinian government they’ve ever had in the West Bank.”

In fact, President Abbas and Prime Minister Salam Fayyad are longtime Israeli collaborationists, serving as Israeli enforcers against their own people.

Of course Netanyahu approves. He controls them both.

Clinton added that “cynics” think his “government’s continued call for negotiations over borders and such means that he’s just not going to give up the West Bank.”

Of course he’s not nor any other Israeli leader. For decades, they’ve stolen most valued parts dunam by dunam. They’ll keep doing it until Palestinians have only worthless scrub land for a bantustan state Israel will agree to as long as it remains occupied or at least firmly controlled.

Clinton also believes Abbas would accept the deal Arafat rejected in 2000, adding:

“For reasons that even after all these years I still don’t know for sure, Arafat turned down the deal I put together that (Ehud) Barak accepted. (And) they also had an Israeli government that was willing to give them East Jerusalem as the capital of the new state of Palestine.”

Fact check

In 1947, UN Resolution 181 internationalized Jerusalem as a separate body (a corpus separatum), administered by a UN Trustee Council. Israel spurned a policy still binding.

In July 1980, Israel’s Basic Law declared “Jerusalem, complete and united, is the capital of Israel.” Yet on June 30, 1980, the Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 476. America abstained.

It stipulated that “all legislative and administrative measures and actions taken by Israel, the occupying Power, which purport to alter the character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem have no legal validity and constitute a flagrant (Fourth Geneva) violation.”

Following Israel’s non-compliance, the Security Council unanimously passed Resolution 478, America again abstaining.

It “censur(ed Israel) in the strongest terms” for enacting the Jerusalem Basic Law, calling it a violation of international law. It also said the Council doesn’t recognize it, and told member states to withdraw their diplomatic missions from the city.

At the time, the Security Council and General Assembly reaffirmed that East Jerusalem is occupied territory, that expropriating its land is illegal, and that all Israeli legislative and administrative measures altering the city’s character and status are null and void and must be rescinded forthwith.

Israel never complied. Moreover, it continued land seizures, home demolitions, and dispossessions, flagrantly flouting its obligations under international law.


Camp David – July 2000

Bill Clinton hosted Arafat and then Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak. Clinton and America’s major media called Israel’s proposal “generous” and unprecedented,” accusing Arafat of spurning peace for conflict by rejecting it.

Barak insisted Arafat sign a “final agreement,” declare an “end of conflict,” and give up any legal basis for additional Occupied Territory land. No written offer was made nor were documents or maps presented.

In fact, only a May 2000 West Bank map was used, dividing the area into four isolated cantons under Palestinian administration surrounded by expanding Israeli settlements and other Israeli-controlled land.

The cantons consisted of: Jericho, a southern canton to Abu Dis, a northern one including Nablus, Jenin and Tulkarm, and a central one including Ramallah.

Gaza was left in limbo as a fifth canton to be resolved when Israel disengaged in August and September 2005, but kept effectively occupied to reenter or attack any time.

Barak’s deal, if accepted, would have doomed real peace. It also offered no resolution of final status issues, including statehood, fixed borders, diaspora Palestinians right of return, East Jerusalem as Palestine’s capital, and others.

Arafat understood and rejected it. Yet he was unfairly blamed. Clinton was party to a deal calling for unconditional surrender, not peace or a viable Palestinian state.

Eleven years later he wondered why Arafat turned it down. He might have been run out of town back home or worse if he accepted it. That’s why.

Support for Palestinian Statehood

Despite his own cross to bear, Turkish Prime Minister Recept Tayyip Erdogan understands enough to support Palestinian statehood.

Addressing the General Assembly on September 22, he sharply criticized Israel for obstructing Middle East peace and refusing to apologize for murdering nine Turkish nationals aboard the Mavi Marmara humanitarian ship to Gaza, then added:

“What is more painful is that the UN has been incapable of taking the necessary steps to end the humanitarian tragedy that Palestinians have gone and are going through.”

He also urged UN member states to recognize Palestinian sovereignty, saying, it was established but never formally implemented.

Ahead of his September 23 General Assembly address, Abbas said pressure won’t deter him from submitting a Security Council bid, knowing it’ll go nowhere because Washington will obstruct it.

Nonetheless, he formerly petitioned the UN, handing Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon an official application for membership. PA delegation member Husam Zomlot called it a “historic moment.” He and others may rethink that view when Palestinians get nothing substantive, leaving them at square one.

Former Clinton administration official David Rothkopf said Obama stated “a clear US position and put himself squarely as a champion of the status quo,” leaving Palestinian statehood unresolved in limbo.

Whether or not he meant it, Abbas added:

Peace “negotiations with Israel achieved nothing at all. All parties are demanding that we return to negotiations, but we say that if Netanyahu does not announce his recognition of the Palestinian state on the 1967 borders and the halt of settlement (construction), we will not return to negotiations.”

On September 17, Hugo Chavez wrote UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, saying:

“I address these words to the United Nations General Assembly, to this great forum that represents all the people, to ratify, on this day and in this setting, Venezuela’s full support of the recognition of the Palestinian state: of Palestine’s right to become a free, sovereign and independent state.”

“This represents an act of historic justice toward a people who carry with them, from time immemorial, all the pain and suffering of the world….Palestine will live and overcome! Long live free, sovereign and independent Palestine!”

The New York Times’ Jihad Against Palestinian Statehood

On September 22, its latest editorial broadside headlined, “The Palestinians’ Bid,” saying:

In addressing the General Assembly, “Obama had no choice but to stand by Israel, this country’s historic ally. And we agree that a negotiated deal is the only way to ensure the creation of a viable Palestinian state, guarantee Israel’s security and build a lasting peace.”

Fact check

Times correspondents, opinion writers, and editorials support wrong over right, especially on issues affecting Israel.

Obama indeed has choices but made the wrong one. Negotiations never produced peace or statehood and won’t now. Israel hasn’t faced security issues for almost 40 years, and doesn’t today as the region’s nuclear armed superpower.

Palestinians are denied justice and statehood because Israel and Washington won’t tolerate either. Peace won’t come until world leaders go around them for resolution enforced with teeth.

“There is no mystery to what a final deal would look like, just a lack of political courage to push it to the end. (It would) creat(e) a Palestinian state on territory equivalent to the pre-1967 West Bank Bank and Gaza Strip, with mutually agreed land swaps.”

Fact check

In 1948, Israel stole 78% of historic Palestine. In 1967, it took the rest. Palestinians will settle for 22% returned. Land swaps won’t work because Israel will demand all valued areas, leaving Palestinians isolated in cantons.

Moreover, what about East Jerusalem as Palestine’s legitimate capital. The Times thought it unimportant to mention, let alone demand.

Yet it called for a “bold and fair” proposal, as well as “help to sell it to the Israeli and Palestinian people – not just politicians.” Otherwise a “diplomatic train wreck” may result.

In fact, Palestinians never got “bold and fair” proposals and won’t now. Instead they’ve endured 63 “train wreck(ed)” years begging to be ended.

As a result, now’s the time to go around Washington, Israel, their obstructionist allies, and collaborationist Abbas leadership for what they won’t achieve otherwise.

It may not be now or never, but if left up to Washington, Israel, and its fifth column leaders, statehood and full UN membership won’t ever come.

A Final Comment

On September 20, Gaza-based journalist and university lecturer Rami Almeghari headlined his Electronic Intifada article, “PA goes to UN without Palestinian consensus behind it,” saying:

It’s “clear that many Palestinians remain at best doubtful that the promised confrontation in New York will do anything to advance their rights and aspirations.”

True enough, but he’s wrong suggesting why bother given that likely outcome. Victories come incrementally, not all at once against long odds. Most important, they come by trying, knowing long sought goals are never achieved easily or quickly.

Moreover, committed leadership for what’s right is key. Palestinians sorely lack it, assuring failure under a man who’ll accept it, his rhetoric notwithstanding.

On September 20, London Independent writer Robert Fisk headlined, “Why the Middle East will never be the same again,” saying:

“The Palestinians won’t achieve statehood, but they will consign the ‘peace process’ to history.” Of course, it was stillborn from inception, and indeed Washington and Israeli obstructionism prevents any possibility of statehood now or in the foreseeable future.

The Mossad-connected DEBKAfile agreed, saying expect no “diplomatic showdown….when the Palestinian bid for statehood is filed Friday, Sept. 23….Neither the Security Council or General Assembly will (make) any immediate decisions….(In fact, the) process (can drag on for) weeks if not months,” and may end up dying from inaction.

“The game is lost,” said Fisk. “America’s political power in the Middle East will this week be neutered on behalf of Israel. Quite a sacrifice” for pyrrhic victories.

All the more reason why Palestinians should never quit trying for what one day’s within reach by persisting. It’s how all great struggles are won.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour/.

Quartet Anti-Palestinian Statehood Proposal

Black Buzz News Service
Moosehead, Maine
October 2, 2011

by Stephen Lendman

Quartet representatives UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, UN Middle East envoy Tony Blair, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, and EU Foreign Affairs and Security Policy High Representative Catherine Aston explained its elements.

On September 21, an initial statement “expressed its strong support for the resumption of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, which can resolve all final status issues within one year.”

“The Quartet reaffirmed its full commitment to its previous statements, which provide that negotiations should lead to an agreement that ends the occupation that began in 1967 and results in the emergence of an independent, democratic, contiguous, and viable Palestinian state living side-by-side in peace and security with Israel and its other neighbors.”

“In the spirit of the Arab Peace Initiative, the Quartet called on Arab states to support Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and progress on the other tracks by taking bolder steps to foster positive relations throughout the region and to combat violence and extremism.”

“Recalling that change on the ground is integral to peace, the Quartet reaffirmed its support for the Palestinian Authority’s August 2009 plan for building the institutions of a Palestinian state within two years.”

Quartet members established a timeline for “realistic and serious” negotiations to begin in a month. They hope for comprehensive proposals within three months, substantial progress in six, and a firm deal by end of 2012.

An international conference in Moscow was also proposed once “substantial progress” has been made on “comprehensive proposals.”

In addition, a Donors Conference will convene to support “state-building actions developed by Prime Minister Fayyad under the leadership of President Abbas.”

“The Quartet agreed to meet regularly” to monitor events and propose recommendations.

A follow-up September 23 statement can be accessed through the following link:

http://www.vanguardngr.com/2011/09/full-text-of-mideast-peace-brokers-statement/

Notably, the proposal excludes key issues, including settlements, 1967 borders, East Jerusalem as Palestine’s capital, Gaza’s siege, diaspora Palestinians right of return, and their legitimate elected Hamas government, among others.

As a result, it’s offensive and demeaning, treating Palestinians like children ordered to obey or be spanked.

It’s little more than old wine in new bottles to deny statehood and keep Palestine oppressively occupied in perpetuity.

Ma’an News said Egypt’s interim Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr said the Quartet’s proposal represents “another failure.”

Addressing the General Assembly on September 24, he said:

Egypt “was, and will remain, committed to the goal of achieving just and comprehensive (Middle East) peace.”

However, the Quartet failed to make progress. Friday, “(w)e have witnessed….another failure….to come up with a balanced vision to achieve the goal that we all know and approve of yet differ on how to realize it.”

On September 23, Abbas petitioned the Security Council for statehood and full UN membership. If implemented, the Quartet proposal will consign it to memory hole oblivion.

Rhetoric aside, Israel, Washington, key EU allies, and Ban Ki-moon aim to bury it this way. In other words – delay, delay until going, going gone and forgotten.

Early Reactions

On September 24, Haaretz writers Natasha Mozgovaya, Barak Ravid and Avi Issacharoff headlined, “Palestinian FM rejects Quartet proposal for not addressing settlements, Israeli withdrawal,” saying:

On Saturday, PA Foreign Minister Riyad al-Malki “rejected (the) Quartet’s proposal to renew peace negotiations….”

On an unnamed Palestinian radio station, he said it doesn’t “call for a settlement freeze and an Israeli withdrawal to the 1967 lines, and therefore isn’t sufficient.”

An unnamed US official called the proposal “realistic and serious,” saying it provides:

“a credible, serious alternative path and we believe that both sides, if they’re true to their words, will find a way to respond favorably to this.”

No matter that decades of “peace talks” failed, including:

– Camp David I;

– Madrid;

– Oslo;

– Oslo II;

– a 1994 Protocol on Economic Relations;

– a Cairo Agreement on Gaza and the Jericho Area the same year;

– the 1994 Washington Declaration and Agreement on Preparatory Transfer of Powers and Responsibilities between the two parties;

– the 1995 Protocol on Further Transfer of Powers and Responsibilities; it included an agreement to resume “permanent status” talks and discuss other elements of a peace plan relating to Israeli troops redeployments, land transfers, safe passage between Gaza and the West Bank, a Gaza seaport, prisoner releases, and various issues related to security, normal civilian activities, international donor aid, and a timetable for final status talks;

– the Sharm el-Sheikh Memorandum;

– Camp David II;

– the “Road Map;”

– Anapolis; and

– the stalled September 2010 grand illusion fudged to look real like all previous failures.

In fact, on and off for decades, negotiations were stillborn from inception because Israel and Washington won’t tolerate peace. They demand unconditional surrender and permanent occupation.

Only Israeli demands matter. Palestinians always got take it or leave it deals. As a result, they never had a legitimate peace partner and don’t now, dealing with Israel’s most extremist ever government under Netanyahu.

He deplores peace. He once called negotiations “a waste of time,” and never does it in good faith. Moreover, Washington agrees to whatever Israel wants, making a mockery of serious talks.

Longtime Israeli analyst Gideon Levy agrees. On September 25, his Haaretz article headlined, “Netanyahu proved Israel doesn’t want peace,” saying:

His General Assembly address showed “Palestinians (and the world) can no longer expect anything from Israel. Nothing.”

“Netanyahu, peddler of emotions, did not shrink from or forget anything (in reviewing) thousands of years of history to obscure reality….”

Those with him in New York “said it all, (a) cheerleading squad, (including) two kippa-wearers, two generals, two former Russians, three current beard-wearers – a depressing and threatening group portrait of Israel’s extreme right, class of 2011.”

Israel’s true face leaves Palestinians on their own with no legitimate peace partner. In fact, Israel won’t tolerate peace, Palestinian statehood, or ending its 44 year occupation.

On Saturday, nonetheless, Abbas again said he’ll consider all “solution(s) that can last and end the conflict.”

“We realize that the parties who suggest initiatives either seek to reach a solution quickly or to prevent any solution….We will see what the days bring, but expect good things….We are talking about weeks, not months.”

Aboard his plane back home, he told reporters:

“When settlement expansion continues, and when Israel considers that an accomplished fact, we will not accept it because it will be a real threat to the presence of the Palestinian Authority. That is what I said, and here I say it again.”

A Final Comment

On return to Ramallah, Haaretz said Abbas called Netanyahu Israel’s most inflexible leader, saying:

“Benjamin Netanyahu’s ideological positions do not allow him to advance forward,” stopping short of saying negotiating with him is impossible.

It’s also true of Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Avigdor Lieberman, a longtime ultranationalist extremist.

On September 25, he told Israeli Army Radio that there will be unspecified “tough repercussions” if Palestine’s statehood application is approved.

Specifically referring to possible General Assembly passage, he said:

“If the Palestinians will indeed pass a one-sided resolution if not in the Security Council then the General Assembly, that would bring us to an altogether new situation and this would have repercussions, tough repercussions. Any unilateral step will without a doubt bring an Israeli reaction.”

At the same time, he and Netanyahu welcome the Quartet’s proposal. They know it promises failure, again shattering Palestinian hopes.

In fact, smart money bets on it because neither side is serious about what Palestinians want and deserve but won’t get.

Maybe next time, not now. It’s for Palestinians on their own to prove them wrong.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour/.