Election of 2014

As I reflect on the past mid-term election, I try not to sigh too hard. The Republicans worked their show… they know that many people DO NOT VOTE… first, there is gerrymandering of area after 2010 census.  ( many people of color try not to respond to the census- thus keeping our numbers down ).
Next, they re-named the Affordable Care Act “Obamacare” so they could take one of the most important pieces of legislation for all people and make many hate it. Worked on trying to repeal it.
Racism is so not over… look at how they treat him and his incredible wife… the office of the President of the United States of America (Leader of the Free World).
If you travel outside the U.S., you realize how much respect President Obama has in the world. Pres. G.W.Bush destroyed our credibilty. People in South America,  Europe, the Caribbean- even Canada think our current president is awesome.
I do not agree with everything the President does. But, we more jobs every month since his presidency; the stock market has come back; even real estate in coming back;many more people are insured and healthier; we are out of Afghanistan AND our gas prices are going down.
Just think if Congress had helped him what could have been????
I hope he stops deportation and works on immigration reform ( including the road to citizenship).
But, what makes people vote against their own self interest??  We have become so dependent on the media that we do not research anything ( although information is easily available
at the touch of one’s fingers). We believe everything they say on TV, radio,  social media. ..Are we going going toward “1984”?? Absolutely! When are we ever going to begin to think again…

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The 49th BFFFF’S Vacay!

I am preparing to land from my vacation with my college friends of 49 years. .. before we married or had children or blazed the many trails we blazed.
I really appreciate you Sandra (my cousin & college mate who after teaching English decided to become a lawyer! ), Marshan, the organized and adventurous one ( she had a 65 Mustang! Went off to teach in Wash, DC) Then worked in corporate America all over the world.And Ruthie ( who married the love of her life at 19. And they both blazed trails on Wall St & Education). And me. Educator who left to try the corporate life…and returned to education until retirement.
To know and love friends for 49 years ( my cousin all my life) is wonderful. We are there for each other in troubled times ( loss of a mate like Sandra and Ruth) or illness…
We have lived vivid and interesting lifetimes. We have laughed and cried together…and we still want to see each other at least twice a year!
Value the friendships you make in college and beyond, treasure those people who were  special to you and you might end up in different places (Texas, Massachusetts,  New York and Florida) anxious to find one place to come together and laugh and love each other! Thank you BFFFF’S for the first 49 years and more to come!

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Happy Mother’s Day

What a wonderful wish to all the mother’s -brand new and older- grandmothers, godmothers, aunts, close friends.
My mother died just before Mother’s Day 1999. But, there were so many Happy Mother’s Days.  My mother was my inspiration, my go to person when I had to check some move I was about to make; when I needed to vent; when I just needed love… I am grateful for the time we had and all the memories I will keep.
I am also elated when I watch my own daughter, Whitney, as an incredible mother. No matter how busy she is, she always stops and hugs or listens to each of her three children.
My family has a new Mom- Sable Weir ( my cousin, Sandra daughter). So glad Sandra is experiencing “grandmotherhood”. It is the best!
I am grateful that I still have other mothers.
Miss Kay, who always makes me happy. My Aunt Theda- is there for me with a smile or a tender word.
My godmother, Oseye, who gives me religious advice and is always a great sounding board.
My Ojo Bona Lorraine. You helped to fill a big void that Mama Wambui left ( she took a piece of my heart.) Thank you for being there for me.
I miss Mama Robinson, another Mom who transitioned. Who I really miss also.
Let us celebrate this day. Let us appreciate all the mothers that are here and those we still remember. What a great holiday! One celebrated all over the world… because all mothers are special. ..yay, moms!!!!

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Progressive Democrats of America

At a meeting of the PDA (Progressive Democrats of America) in Northampton. Just heard Jim Hightower ( populist progressive from Texas) speak.
Bernie Sanders ( Sen. From Vt) just spoke. He is phenomenal human being!  What an experience.
There is a media panel with Thom Hartman (of radio fame) , Miami Kennedy, actress & activist, etc.
Most if the people here are over 50 – many over 60+…. where are the young people???
#somuchatstake

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Town Meeting Spring 2014

I am sitting in the Middle School listening to warrants being read – it is called “Town Meeting” . It is the old fashioned New England Town Meeting!
I believe it is a good way to govern. It has its drawbacks… In an environment where people are opinionated, there is often lots and discussion and sometimes to the nth degree. There is a saying,  “the only thing silent in Amherst is the “h”….
It is really interesting and wonderful! I know a few people who are new to Town Meeting and excited about it!
Go citizens!!!!

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Massachusetts State Convention and me.

I will be a delegate this June to the Democratic Convention. For my former students and good friends this is no real surprise. I believe in “Participation in Government”!
We are getting ready to elect a Governor, Lt.Governor, Attorney General… I find this exciting and important. The system is far from perfect…but, I am pleased that I will be a participant.
More to follow….

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The Oscars!?

Lupita! 12 Years a Slave! Wow. I was thrilled that I stayed up this time! Yes, Mathew McConaughey played an incredible role and was changed for the better.
But, 12 Years a Slave will resound in Hollywood.  Why? Because  this type of movie may get a Sundance nod…but, an Oscar???
This gives me hope. I will leave it as just hope. You fill in the blank.
My god sister,  Dr. Yaba Blay,  has a book ” One Drop”. Changing the lens on race. She is currently working on “Pretty. Period”. You know the expression, “You are pretty for a Black girl”!!! Watch out for this project.
My daughter, Whitney Battle-Baptiste,  does work on Race and Gender. So many of our scholars and up and coming scholars are doing real work and are changing the conversation on race.
And, then there is Lupita! Just about everyone sane thinks she is beautiful and she is! For all our gorgeous little Black girls growing up, you ARE BEAUTIFUL! Changing the talk on race.
So, there is still so much work to do.  But, I am hopeful….

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