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Blue_Tires

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Gender: Male
Hometown: VA
Home country: USA
Current location: VA
Member since: 2003 before July 6th
Number of posts: 41,206

About Me

Blocked on Twitter by that rat bastard fuck @ggreenwald

Journal Archives

The first African-American golfer to win a PGA Tour event dies at 80

Pete Brown was not the first African-American golfer to play in a PGA Tour event. (That would be Charlie Sifford, who passed away earlier this year.)

Nor was Brown the most prolific. (That title belongs to Calvin Peete, who passed away earlier this week.) But Brown was the first African-American golfer to win a PGA Tour event.

Brown won the Waco Turner Open in Burneyville, Oklahoma, in 1964.

He had a tough post-golf life, though. Two of his daughters died of cancer and, according to this Sports Illustrated profile of Jim Dent, Brown was bedridden for a while.

His buddy Dent even let him stay in a house he owned in Augusta, Georgia, rent-free. Tiger Woods helped pay for the move.

It's been said that these things happen in threes. First, Sifford. Then, Peete. Now, Brown. Three of the most iconic African-American golfers ever.

Hopefully, Brown is the last to pass for a long time. He'll always be known as the first to win.

http://www.cbssports.com/golf/eye-on-golf/25170307/the-first-african-american-golfer-to-win-a-pga-tour-event-dies-at-80

http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/golf-devil-ball-golf/african-american-golf-great-calvin-peete-dead-at-71-165907909-golf.html

NCAA Is Largely Responsible For Lack Of African-Americans In MLB

he percentage of African-Americans in MLB hit an all-time high in 1981 at 18.7 percent; since then, that number has been on a steady decline, and has dropped 70 percent to 7.8 percent entering the 2015 season. That’s an alarming rate and something must be done in order to raise those statistics. There is one problem; MLB can do everything in their power to try and generate more interest in their sport in the African-American community, but that won’t translate into more African-Americans in MLB. The reason for that is because MLB is not the culprit behind this issue — that designation goes to the NCAA.

The NCAA has reaped the rewards of the success of football and men’s basketball for the entirety of their existence. In return, they allow universities to offer full scholarships to the players in those sports. When it comes to college baseball, there aren’t any full rides to college for athletes, just partial scholarships. With the athletic abilities of young African-Americans, there are many who are extremely talented at more than one sport. If kids are offered to play basketball or football collegiately, in addition to a partial baseball scholarship, the majority are going to choose to play football or basketball so they aren’t responsible for paying part of their college tuition. 88 percent of college baseball players are white and that is unacceptable.

The hip hop culture that is synonymous in African-American communities is more closely knit with the NBA and NFL than it is with MLB. These young kids look at this and see that their idols are at basketball games or football games and that has a big influence on their decisions as well. Heck, Jay-Z is an agent now. Drake is at every Toronto Raptors game. Wale is a huge Washington Wizards fan. Kids recognize this and put two and two together.


MLB kind of has its hands tied at the moment. Unless they can begin funneling money to the NCAA to allow for full scholarships to be offered, there’s nothing else they can do about the NCAA issue. With the cultural factor, my suggestion would be for MLB to hire an entirely African-American marketing team and allow them to build a campaign to try and bring part of that hip hop culture to MLB. MLB needs to go to whatever lengths are necessary, immediately, or risk losing the African-American community altogether.


http://www.rantsports.com/mlb/2015/05/04/ncaa-is-largely-responsible-for-lack-of-african-americans-in-mlb/

Watch Award-Winning Doc 'Black and Cuba'

A film whose crowdfunding campaign was featured on this site in 2012, is now out! Titled "Black and Cuba," and directed by Robin J. Hayes, professor at The New School, the timely (in light of recent improved USA-Cuba relations) feature documentary follows a group of "outcast" African American students at Yale University, who take a field trip to Cuba to see "how revolution lives," and to get inspiration in order to pursue their own black resistance reading group.

You can now rent or buy it via Vimeo On Demand here: https://vimeo.com/ondemand/34256.

Details follow below (trailer underneath):

The award-winning documentary "Black and Cuba" is now available on Vimeo on Demand after a successful run at film festivals throughout the US and in Berlin. Directed by Dr. Robin J. Hayes, the film follows a diverse group of street smart students who feel like outcasts at their elite Ivy League university, band together, and adventure to the enigmatic island of Cuba, whose population is 60% Black. Black and Cuba arrives on the heels of the Obama administration’s efforts to thaw US diplomatic relations with Cuba and ease travel restrictions to the socialist country for Americans.

By illuminating how African Americans from communities such as Harlem and the South Bronx experience Cuba, this documentary reveals a perspective on the US-Cuba conflict that is rarely seen in foreign policy circles.

“Freedom to travel to Cuba is particularly important to African Americans,” asserts the film’s director Robin J. Hayes, a professor at The New School, “The cultural and political ties that bind Afro-Cubans and African Americans have been critical to civil rights activism in both countries.”

The film is produced by Progressive Pupil, a non-profit which aims to “make Black studies for everybody” by creating interactive media and documentary films. A national audience engagement strategy is currently under way that brings the documentary’s discussion of Cuba and how racial discrimination is an international human rights issue to high schools, college campuses and community-based organizations.

http://blogs.indiewire.com/shadowandact/watch-award-winning-doc-black-and-cuba-outcasts-african-american-ivy-leaguers-their-cuban-adventure-20150505

May 5, 1950: Gwendolyn Brooks Becomes the First African-American Awarded a Pulitzer Prize

The Pulitzer was only the first of many awards Brooks would earn throughout her long career. In 1967 she published in The Nation a brief prose eulogy for Langston Hughes: “Mightily did he use the street. He found its multiple heart, its tastes, its smells, alarms, formulas, flowers, garbage and convulsions. He brought them all to his table-top. He crushed them to a writing-paste. The pen that was himself went in…” The dazzlingly named Rolfe Humphries, who wrote this review of Brooks’s second volume in 1949, the year before she won the Pulitzer, was a poet and educator who mentored Theodore Roethke. In 1939, he smuggled into Poetry magazine an acrostic poem in which the first letters of each line spelled out, “Nicholas Murray Butler is a horse’s ass,” referring to the president of Columbia University. He found himself briefly banned him from Poetry magazine.


Where the subject is the Negro people, or the Negro person, Miss Brooks has gone considerably beyond some of the quaint and for-tourists-only self-consciousness that at times made one a little uncomfortable in reading her first book. Her weakness lies in streaks, as it were, of awkwardness, naïveté, when she seems to be carried away by the big word or the spectacular rhyme; when her ear, of a sudden, goes all to pieces…. Her strength consists of boldness, invention, a daring to experiment, a naturalness that does not scorn literature but absorbs it, exploits it, and through this absorption and exploitation comes out with the remark made in an entirely original way, not offhand so much as forthright. Miss Brooks, by now, must realize that the greatest danger to her progress lies in the risk of her being taken up; she needs to be both very inquisitve about, and very remorseless to, her weaker side.

http://www.thenation.com/blog/206201/may-5-1950-gwendolyn-brooks-becomes-first-african-american-awarded-pulitzer-prize

African-Americans resettle in Africa

Ghana is the first African country to open its doors to people of African descent from all over the world – but bureaucracy takes a toll

By Efam Dovi
“The ocean helps me fall asleep and wakes me up in the morning,” says Mr. Thompson, an African-American retiree taking a stroll on the beach where palm trees shade hand-carved canoes. “Where else can I live this close to the ocean? It would cost me millions of dollars!”n Prampram, a town just an hour’s drive east of Ghana’s capital Accra, many holiday houses line the shores of the South Atlantic Ocean. One of them belongs to Jerome Thompson. Located only 500 metres from the water, Mr. Thompson’s house is resilient to the effects of the salt and wind. The floors, windows and doors are made of hard wood. His self-designed furniture is made from quality Ghanaian timber and hand-carved by local artisans.

Mr. Thompson, a native of Maryland in the United States, retired to Ghana 11 years ago. He first visited the West African country on a tour in 2000. “I fell in love with Ghana and its people,” he recalled, during an interview with Africa Renewal. “It was good seeing black people, my people, in charge of the country (Ghana).”

That trip took him to many attractions across the country, including the Cape Coast Castle from where centuries ago millions of Africans walked through the infamous “Door of No Return” into slave ships bound for plantations in the Americas and the Caribbean, never to set foot in their homelands again.

But for their descendants like Mr. Thompson’s, the sign that hangs on that infamous door today reads: “Door of Return”.

“I was so ready to turn my back on the United States,” he says, adding: “We did so much for the US, yet they don’t want to see us as first-class citizens.”

A feeling of belonging
Mr. Thompson is one of the 20 or so African-Americans and other people from the diaspora of African descent who have found a home in this fishing community, attracted by the beaches and the peace and tranquility the town offers away from the hustle and bustle of Accra.

http://www.modernghana.com/news/615713/1/african-americans-resettle-in-africa.html

The African Century

Africa is the largest place on Earth it’s possible to ignore. It won’t be forever.

Africa is in the news again, and as is so often the case, the reason is tragic. The drowning deaths of hundreds of migrants attempting to cross the Mediterranean has put the plight of tens of thousands who make that hazardous crossing on the map, and forced European leaders to debate how best to respond to a burgeoning influx. But this tragedy is already slipping off the front pages, and if the past is any prologue, Africa will soon sink into obscurity again.

Africa is the largest place on earth that it is possible, most of the time, to ignore. It won’t be forever. The journalistic cliché is that, as the 20th was the American century, the 21st will be the Chinese. But there is a plausible case to be made that, within a few short decades, we’ll be talking instead about the African century.

The reason is simple arithmetic. Demographically, Africa is expanding at a rate unmatched by any other remotely comparable region. Of the 25 countries with the highest total fertility rates, all but two (Afghanistan and East Timor) are African—and included in that list are some of Africa’s largest and most populous countries, such as Nigeria, Ethiopia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. According to the UN’s population projections, Africa’s population will triple between 2000 and 2050, going from roughly 800 million to roughly 2.4 billion. It will then nearly double between 2050 and 2100, to 4.2 billion. At the end of the century, Africa is projected to have nearly as many people as all of Asia, and roughly as many as the entire world did in 1980. Nearly two out of every five people on earth in 2100 will be African.

Africa is also rapidly urbanizing. Until quite recently, the continent was relatively sparsely populated—and still is compared to Europe, China or India. Of the 25 densest countries with a population of over 1 million, only three are in Africa; of the 25 least-dense countries with a population of over 1 million, 12 are in Africa. Africa’s historically low urbanization rate has meant poorer integration into the global economy. All of this is changing or has already changed to the point where Africa will not be as isolated in future decades as it was in the past. And an Africa of mostly middle-income countries integrated into the world economy would have an enormous impact.


http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2015/05/africa-will-dominate-the-next-century-117611.html#.VUpiNqTD9zl

Soyinka denies insulting Igbo, slams online media

Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, has denied describing Igbo as people who vote based on their stomach.

Some online media had quoted Soyinka as saying Igbo were politically naive while delivering a lecture titled ‘Predicting Nigeria, Electoral Ironies’ at Harvard University Hutchins Centre for African and African American Research in the United States.

He was quoted as saying “Igbo remained unrepentant and resolute towards their strategic objective of secession at worst; or a Nigerian president of Igbo extraction at best.”

However, Soyinka said in a statement on Thursday that it was unfortunate that people could tell lies against him.

The playwright described those peddling the rumour as morons who have ulterior motives.

He said his entire lecture delivered at Harvard University was recorded on video and anyone who was interested could access it on the Internet.

He said, “I have just read a statement attributed to me on a news outlet, evidently one of the Internet infestations. My lecture at the Hutchins Centre, Harvard University, was video recorded. Anyone who believes what I am alleged to have said must be a moron – repeat, a moron.

http://www.punchng.com/news/soyinka-blasts-online-media-denies-insulting-igbo/

They were told their babies had died. Now, these black women wonder: Was it a lie?

One woman and her long-lost daughter may have brought a dark chapter from St. Louis history to light.

As a 26-year-old woman in 1965, Zella Jackson Price was told that her daughter had died shortly after birth. Nearly 50 years later, though, Jackson Price learned that her daughter has been alive all along.

Melanie Diane Gilmore, also known as “Baby Diane,” is now 49 and living in Oregon. After mother and daughter reunited last month, thanks to some Facebook sleuthing by Gilmore’s children, dozens of other women have come forward with eerily similar and potentially tragic stories.

They had all given birth to children at the Homer G. Phillips Hospital, which was at one point the only hospital dedicated to serving African Americans in racially segregated St. Louis.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/05/06/they-were-told-their-babies-had-died-now-dozens-of-black-women-wonder-if-it-was-all-a-lie/

Merkel defends German intelligence cooperation with NSA

Source: Reuters


Chancellor Angela Merkel defended Germany's BND intelligence agency on Monday against accusations it illegally helped the United States spy on officials and firms in Europe.

In her first public comments on a scandal that has gripped Germany for weeks, Merkel said it was still unacceptable for friendly nations to spy on each other - a reference to her dismay over reports the NSA had tapped her cell phone up to 2013.

She ardently backed BND cooperation with the U.S. National Security Agency in fighting terror even as Germany's top public prosecutor launched an investigation. Spying on behalf of the NSA has upset many in Germany where surveillance is a sensitive issue due to abuses by the Nazis and East German Stasi.

"We've quite correctly got controls on the BND in parliament and I consider that to be absolutely essential," Merkel said, adding that her office stood ready to answer all its questions.


Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/05/04/us-germany-spying-merkel-idUSKBN0NP13620150504?feedType=RSS&feedName=worldNews

Syria: Death from Assad’s Chlorine

2.

Bad Chlorine

Though barely recognizable after four years of one of the worst conflicts since World War II, Syria used to be a middle-income country. For decades, chlorine was routinely used for safe water, sanitation, and the manufacture of medicines for both domestic consumption and export. But for several years before the beginning of the popular uprising in March 2011, and in part contributing to it, the Syrian government denied many public health measures to areas of the country that were politically unsympathetic to it, selectively withholding not only chlorine for treatment of water contaminated by sewage, but also routine childhood vaccinations. That continues today, with widespread denial of chlorine to Deir Ezzor, Raqqa, Daraa, the outskirts of Damascus, and other areas outside government control. A few drops of bleach would be sufficient to disinfect water and hands, but it is simply unattainable. In besieged areas, such as Ghouta, water is frequently cut off altogether as a punitive measure.

The consequences of this deprivation are magnified by mass displacement, with ten million civilians having been forced to flee their homes, often leaving three or four families together in households of appalling and unhygienic conditions. 642,000 Syrians live under siege, in even worse conditions. Myiasis—a maggot-ridden wound infection associated with lack of water—appeared in Ghouta last year, at the same time as a water cutoff. In Deir Ezzor, untreated tap water comes directly from the Euphrates River, two hundred yards downstream from a sewage pipe. As a result, there were more than 30,000 cases of hepatitis A across the country in 2014, with several fatalities in young children. This disease is rarely seen in the US, and hardly ever in fatal form.

On February 24 of this year, WHO issued an alert on the risk of cholera in Syria, a concern heightened by the sudden outbreak in Hama in mid-March of more than five hundred cases of acute watery diarrhea. The combination of inadequate surveillance, the absence of laboratories to test for cholera, and previous cover-ups by the Syrian Ministry of Health of cholera in 2005 and 2009 and polio in 2013 suggests that cholera may indeed be back. Even my colleagues in Damascus, where most water is still chlorinated, have suffered from hepatitis; others have succumbed to typhoid. Typhoid is now endemic in southeastern Deir Ezzor—the same area where polio first reappeared in 2013.

The governorate of Daraa has just reported more than two hundred cases of hand, foot, and mouth disease, which spreads easily to children exposed to unchlorinated water that has been contaminated by the stool of an infected child. Scabies and lice are everywhere. Many other water-related diseases, such as polio, giardia, schistosomiasis, and Legionella, are difficult to diagnose and treat without specialist doctors, well-equipped health facilities to collect blood, stool, skin, and urine samples, and labs for isolation of the pathogen—most of which the Syrian government has destroyed in opposition-held areas.

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2015/may/07/syria-death-assads-chlorine/
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