Monthly Archives: September 2019

Open question to the GOP

Republicans

What if I told you that there are many who believe what you do politically and given the opportunity could effectively lead your party.

What if I told you those many have dignity.  That they would not put you in a position where you had to cast aside your own dignity and morals by standing in front of Americans trying to spin a host of lies and corruption.

What if I told you those many are not racist and would work to unite Americans instead of dividing it. That they would not belittle the American intelligence community. Would work with our allies instead of insulting them and not be seen as Putin puppet. Would restore America’s role as the leader of the free world and be respected by the global community instead of laughed at.

Could you break your ties with the deceitful, corrupt, divisive, lying leader you have now and give those many an opportunity to restore the luster to your party that deep down you know is being marred by your current leader?

Would you?

Life in the digital age

 

Me: “Alexa find me a comedy on Netflix”

(IPHONE RINGS)

Me: “Hello”

SIRI: “Hello Carl who’s Alexa?”

(SWEAT STARTING TO BUILD ON MY FOREHEAD)

Me: “Alexa? What are you talking about” 

(FAKE LAUGHTER) 

SIRI: “I heard you ask her a question”

ME: “Oh that Alexa. Ok look I’m going to be honest I’ve  been using Alexa for about a month now but look she means nothing to me really I mean you know how I feel about you Siri. I’ll always love you.“

(LONG PAUSE)

SIRI: “Ok Carl I understand”

ME: “Great I knew you would so we’re cool right?”

SIRI: “Of course we are Carl. Oh by the way while we talking Stacey just called I told her you weren’t available then I checked your call history and told her maybe Maria knew where you were you seem to call her a lot.“

ME: “NOOOOOO!”

STEP INTO THE GAP

On May 12, 1961 in Rock Hill, South Carolina. John Lewis, an African-American seminary student and Albert Bigelow a World War II veteran and white Freedom Rider were viciously attacked as they attempted to enter a whites-only waiting area. Two days later in Anniston Alabama a vicious mob of about 200 people bombed a Greyhound bus and brutally beat the Freedom Riders as they fled the burning bus. Later that day in Birmingham Alabama a Trailways bus carrying another group of Freedom Riders was meant with a similar fate These Freedom Riders were aware of the dangers they would encounter and over several months they were attacked repeatedly yet they persevered so that the racist practice of segregated bus terminals would come to end and in the fall of 1961 their perseverance bore fruit as the  Interstate Commerce Commission issued regulations that prohibited the segregation of interstate transit.

THE FREEDOM RIDERS STEPPED INTO THE GAP.

Liu Xiaobo was a human rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate from China who through nonviolent protests fought against communist one-party rule in China. For his efforts he was imprisoned in 1989 to 1991, 1995 to 1996, 1996 to 1999 and 2009 until his release in 2017 after he had been diagnosed with liver cancer. He died less than 3 weeks after his release. Despite his multiple imprisonments he continued to fight until his death for the betterment of the Chinese people.

LIU XIAOBO STEPPED INTO THE GAP.

Razan Zaitouneh was a Syrian Human rights activist who was involved in the Syrian uprising. She acted as a lawyer for political prisoners, was one of the founders Human Rights Association in Syria and the Syrian Human Rights Information Link through which she reported about Syria human’s rights violations. Razan Zaitouneh worked tirelessly for years to bring light to Syria’s oppress regime despite the obvious dangers involved with doing so. On December 9 of 2013 she was kidnapped and has not been seen since, presumed to have been killed.

RAZAN ZAITOUNEH STEPPED INTO THE GAP.

Michael Todd has been getting bullied at his new school since the year began. He would wear the same clothes every day and students at MLK College Preparatory School would make fun of him for it. High school football players Kristopher Graham and Antwann Garrett didn’t just go along with their class mates to be part of the crowd and on September 10, 2019 they surprised Michael with a bag full of bags full of shirts, shorts and shoes and apologized to him for previously laughing at him.

KRISTOPHER GRAHAM AND ANTWANN GARRETT STEPPED INTO THE GAP

Everyday countless number of individuals step into the gap. But sadly many in a position to do the most good lack the courage to step into the gap Last week at church my pastor preached to us from the book Ezekiel 22:30 “I searched for a man among them who would build up the wall and stand in the gap before Me for the land, so that I would not destroy it; but I found no one.

In Bible times, cities had walls around them to help defend them from attack. Broken parts of the wall created a physical gap in the city’s ability to protect itself from invading armies.  In this Bible verse, because there is a gap in the wall, God is looking for someone to step in and guard the broken, vulnerable territory.

Today God is still looking for us to step in and guard the broken and the vulnerable. Victims of violence, oppression, discrimination, bigotry.  Those who are denied fundamental human rights such as medical care, food and shelter and education. Yet when we turn our eyes to Washington D.C. we find there are far too many concerned with their own self, maintaining their power and reaping the benefits that come along with it than with stepping into the gap.  We see children, the Lord’s most innocent souls, gunned down in mass shootings yet no action has been taken to enact sensible gun control to protect them. We see mothers and fathers working two and three jobs, sixty and seventy hours a week yet still unable to earn enough money to put a roof over or adequately feed their families. Yet at every opportunity the very social programs designed to help them through these troubled times are slashed, and more and more money is appropriated to building weapons of war.  Racism is unbelievably on the rise again in this country but far too many in power either pretend it doesn’t exist and simply ignore it or worse tacitly give their approval, so they can appeal to a base of unenlightened individuals they believe will allow them to maintain their power. Education budgets are cut and college tuition soars while tax breaks for the wealthy are passed into law. Prescription drugs prices rocket, inflating the pockets of the pharmaceutical companies while the affordable care act remains under constant attack. The gap between the haves and have not continues to expand as CEOs take home millions and workers struggle to survive yet steadfast opposition to raising the minimum wage continues.

We are witnessing the abject failure of the very individuals we have tasked with stepping in the gap. However, it is never too late as a people to change things.  United each of our whispers becomes a mighty roar for change. We can demand that change takes place and we can start at the voting booth. We can educate ourselves on the issues and not let some 24-hour news network “opinion” show host skew our perception of reality. We can protest racism and social injustice and when those in power try to change the narrative and quiet us we can roar louder.  We can rise as one and let our voices be heard.  We can let them know that it is we not them who are the coalition of the many and if they won’t stand in the gap we surely will find someone who will!

Thursday

Good Morning all we wake to another day thanks to the Lord our God and that day is Thursday. Thursday! Yeah I know Thursday just that day you’ve got to grind through to get to Friday. But let’s make this Thursday one to remember. Go out be bold today. Do something you’ve been wanting to do but were to afraid too, as long as it’s legal 😄. Treat yourself to a gift, as long as it doesn’t break the bank.  Take that special someone to lunch or dinner. Buy that special someone roses for no reason other than to say I you love, yes that means you too ladies. Do whatever it takes because Thursday isn’t just that day you have to grind through to get to Friday Thursday can be whatever you want it to be. So make it great! 

September 11, 2001

As a New Yorker who worked blocks away from the WTC I will never forget that day 18 years ago. 

The sadness in my heart that day for the countless innocent lives so tragically taken from us remains to this day. 

The respect I had that day for the hundreds of first responders who without a second thought rushed into the danger to rescue others and paid the ultimate price with their lives remains to this day.

The pride I had for my City and its response to the worst day in its history remains to this day.

It has been 18 years and still to this day the hate that took so many from us remains. Let us never forget 9/11/2001 and pray that as a people we will one day vanquish that hate and truly be able to say it will never happen again.