Showing posts from December, 2015

The Relationship between Nelson and Fidel: Game Changing

I was watching the History Channel last night and found out something that I had never known before.  As a Howard University graduate, I take my approach to learning Black History seriously.  As a Spanish minor, I also took great interest in learning about the struggles of individuals in Latin America.  There were many parallels between the struggles that we faced coming through slavery and the struggles that were faced by people of color in Spanish speaking countries.  I was shocked though to find out that Cuban troops helped to stabilize a radical group in Angola and thereby lead to the overthrow of apartheid in South Africa.

The system of apartheid was one of the most brutal forms of social control ever instituted.  As a student, I protested in front of the South African embassy.  I even met with a representative who felt that everything was fine in her country and that we should not be concerned about the people there.  I visited Johannesburg and even went to a small house that N…

The Gospel of Thomas is an Interesting Document

As Christians enter into the Christmas season many of us read a little more about the Bible and its origins.  Growing up as a young child, Christmas was wrapped up with shopping and Santa Claus.  My anticipation then was waking up with toys under the tree.  My understanding of Christ being born in a manger was solidified by the manger that my Mom would put up in mid-December every year.  I was Catholic at the time and had no reason to question the origins of the writers of the King James version of the Holy Bible.

Many Biblical scholars believe that the Gospel of Thomas is one of the first gospels written about the life of Christ.  These writings were discovered in the Egyptian desert in the mid 1940's.  They are sometimes attribute to Judas Thomas and one quote says, Whoever finds the meaning of these words will not taste death.  Christians, as well as many other religions, have a belief in eternal life.  We can repent, change our ways and be assured of entry into the Kingdom of…

Brett Brown Recieving a Contract Extension: Enigmatic!!

The Philadelphia 76ers are now 1 - 25.  They have set a record for beginning two seasons in a row with at least nine straight losses.  We just got slammed by the Atlanta Hawks last night.  We are on pace to break the former worst record of 9 - 73 set by a previous version of the 76ers.  We have had leads in recent games late but cannot hold on to win.  Our only win was against Kobe Bryant's Lakers.  We will never be able to replicate that feeling of defeating Kobe in Philly because it is his last year.  Philly fans even warmed to this retiring legend after harboring grudges for many years.

I have a hard time with Coach Brown's accent.  It is a Boston type accent and it is particularly grating trying to explain all of these losses.  He said, 'we don't have leadership.'  How did we sign JaVale McGee and then pay him $11 million to sit down and relax this season.  We traded Michael Carter-Williams, a 6'6" point guard to the Milwaukee Bucks because he suppose…

Can Climate Change Bridge a Racial Divide?

There was a measure of success in the efforts to avoid the rapid effects of climate change recently.  Almost 200 nations agreed to abide by a new set of fossil fuel usage standards in order to reduce temperatures by a minimum of 2 degrees Celsius over the next five years.  Many of the richer nations had to sacrifice to achieve these goals.  I have watched with trepidation the damage that we are already doing to the polar ice caps.  If climate change is not evident elsewhere, then I have already lived through the hottest July on record.  also, December is bringing in balmy temperatures close to 70 degrees on a regular basis.

The deal on Climate Change will be a crowning achievement of the Obama Administration.  Many Republicans have decried his efforts because it supposedly hurts big businesses.  Some have even questioned the scientific basis for global warming.  For those citizens who lived through Hurricane Sandy the reality of global warming was horrendous and costly.  Some of that…

Kevin Hannah: Rest in Peace

I saw Kevin Hannah for the last time on November 14th at Galdo's in south Philly.  We were part of a large group enjoying a brunch sponsored by Councilman Kenyatta Johnson.  He was sitting with his ace homey Al Littlepage.  He had posted a picture of himself with an IV in his hand a few weeks earlier on Facebook.  He indicated that he needed to take better care of himself and lose some weight. At our age, fifty-something for me, we can all say the same thing.  He still was his usual affable self though and I thought nothing of the brief encounter.

Kevin was the Ward Chairman for the 36th Ward.  He had recently assumed that position when our long time Ward leader, Anna Verna, stepped down.  He was a fixture near the door early on in my term as a Committee Person but he recently assumed his new seat at the front of the meeting space.  He helped to lead fundraisers and was active at the State level also.  Tara and Kevin Hannah were committee persons who carried on a family tradition…