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Robert E. Lee & Jefferson Davis on Flying the Confederate Flag

Greetings Friends!

After someone shared these facts with me privately on Facebook, I did a bit of research and was astonished to uncover this truth, which I never knew. It adds a tremendous amount of irony in the aftermath of the Charlottesville, Va riots, where racist, white nationalists protested the removal of symbols of the Confederacy:

It's so ironic that some folks are fighting to keep the Confederate flag flying on government property, when two huge, iconic figures from the Confederacy clearly did not want the flag flown after the war. Robert E. Lee and Jefferson Davis, respectively, said:

"I think it wisest not to keep open the sores of war, but to follow the example of those nations who endeavored to obliterate the marks of civil strife, and to commit to oblivion the feelings it engendered." – Letter to the Gettysburg Identification Committee, 1865

"My pride is that that flag shall not set between contending brothers; and that, when it shall no longer be the common flag of the country, it shall be folded up and laid away like a vesture no longer used." – The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government, 1881

So, a general in the Confederate military, and the PRESIDENT of the Confederacy, did NOT think it was a good idea to fly the flag anymore after the war, yet some folks are kicking, screaming, protesting (which is their right as long as it's peaceful), and resorting to violence to keep it flying. What exacerbates this is that anyone can fly whatever flag they want on their private property. Removal efforts concern government property. It's still in museums (as it should be, it IS a part of American history) but folks are going nuts over a flag that both of these men felt should be retired. Hmm. Ain't that something?

Until next musing,

Talitha K. McEachin

 
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Posted by on August 14, 2017 in In The News, Politics, Society, Uncategorized

 

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My Musings: Race Matters, Poor Melania, Comey vs Clinton, and Electoral College Blues

Greetings Friends,

This is my first musing in the aftermath of one of the most contentious presidential elections we’ve had in quite some time. Interestingly enough, I accurately predicted this somewhat, unprecedeted Trump win as early as March of this year. Donald John Trump, Sr is our victorious President-Elect, whether we love it or not. Obviously most voters do, to the tune of 290 electoral votes over 228 for Hillary Clinton. It was a landslide. Excuse the obvious pun, but populism trumps party allegiance every time:

Race Matters

trumpclintonI’m going to say this very carefully, but I already know it will be over the heads of the knee-jerkers, political party (or lack thereof) not withstanding. I don’t know with certainty, that President-Elect Trump is a racist. I do know that he has said some very insensitive, outlandish, alpha male, ego-strokin’ stuff, which I’ve found repugnant. Some of it has been racial in nature, most of it has not. Let me interject a reminder that I’ve never supported Trump, because the knee-jerkers heads are about to explode right about now. I’ve favored Libertarian Gary Johnson throughout this entire election cycle. Truth be told, I could care less about Trump’s, or any other politician’s racism, as long as it doesn’t influence their decisions while on the job. You just can’t police thoughts & feelings. Racism is rooted in fear – its emotional. People have the right to be who they are, even if that means being a racist. As long as they stay in their lane, I don’t give two clicks of witch’s heel about their delusions of racial grandeur. 

There’s nothing in the constitution barring racists, xenophobes, mysogynists, homophobes, or arachnophobes, from running for president. So all of this whining about who Trump is, or perceived as, is a waste of too many salty tears. Call me when this stuff translates into legislation, and I’ll stand with you against him. Until then, all of this noise, because that’s what it is, is much ado about absolutely nothing, though I support your freedom to make it. Just do me a favor & turn it in the opposite direction of me.  It’s so very telling, that this election came down to a choice between two, lily white opponents, yet some are still making this all about race. I’ve concluded that, that’s what matters to far too many, so we have a long way to go in America as far as racial tension is concerned. Some are just stuck on stupid island. But hey, as long as they don’t try to knock the freedom of speech hat from my head, I won’t bother the dunce one on theirs. Carry on…

Poor Melania

Some folks are making themselves feel better by calling Melania Trump a stripper, whore, skank, trashy slut – too many demeaning labels to share, but I’m sure you get the point.melaniaMelania Trump used to be a stripper & model – both legal occupations, and I’m not judging her. She nor her husband have ever hidden this from anyone. She danced, she modeled, but I, nor anyone of those speaking negatively about her know anything about her sex life. The so-called “whore” hasn’t been a stripper or a model in a long time, she snagged a billionaire, has a 10 year old son, and now she’s the FLOTUS. Somehow, I think she’s going to be just fine, and is doing much better than most. These same folks are pointing out the hypocrisy in the way some on the right have denigrated Michelle Obama over the years. They’d be right, but this isn’t new. Some have been denigrating our First Lady for the last eight years, since she set foot into the White House. Trump’s elevation to our First Lady did not prompt the backlash Obama has faced at any time. Some care more about what she does with her va-jay-jay than they do our national debt. How in the heck are some more upset about derogatory comments about Michelle Obama than she is? She couldn’t care less.

“Talitha, why are you defending Melania Trump?” some have asked. Its because I have class, something such persons are asserting she lacks. While some are focused on Melania Trump’s past, people have lost their lives in the aftermath of an earthquake in New Zealand, Iraqi forces have re-captured ancient lands, and the moon’s cycloptic eye is gazing much closer upon us, probably frowning. Stooping to the level of those who spoke negatively about Michelle Obama, by doing the same to Melania Trump, is equally childish. Grow up. Priorities. Priorities. People.

Comey vs Clinton

comeyI’ve not been at all timid, regarding my disapproval of FBI Director James Comey’s recent, controversial decision to send a letter to Congress detailing questionable communications of Hillary Clinton. I don’t care for Hillary Clinton – politically. That’s not a secret, but I still think Comey should be fired. The end of Election 2016 doesn’t change this view of mine. He made this decision on his own, which is unprecedented given FBI & DOJ protocol. How can he announce that he was not going to prosecute her earlier this year, then send the letter to Congress, making it public, eight days before the election? If you think this had no impact on any voters, you’re incredibly naive. It’s not fair folks. He should have waited until after the election. Am I to believe, that he didn’t think about sending the letter at all after March, until days before the election? If I am to believe that, then I may as well throw in a belief in unicorns & tiny men in green suits, with their pots of gold at the end of rainbows. Santa Claus really delivers gifts on Christmas Eve, and dragons really are our ancient, misunderstood, fiery friends. I’d say the same thing if he had done this to Donald Trump. People who think the electoral playing field was level after that, are more concerned about winning than fairness, which speaks volumes. I could never look myself in the mirror, if I ignored this very obvious, biased, political legerdemain, from someone whose function in our government, is not supposed to be partisan.

Hillary Clinton & her campaign crew are blaming her loss on this very thing. I can only agree that it was poorly timed & inappropriate, but the harsh reality is that Trump ran a better campaign. Approximately five million Democrats chose to stay home. Too many Democrats assessed erroneously, that Trump was the easiest pick of the right-wing litter for Clinton to beat. This led them to vote in the GOP primary for Trump. It backfired, and though Clinton humbly conceded the race to Trump expeditiously, she & her crew should stop shifting the entire blame on Comey, and focus on the real culprit in the mirror.

Finally,

Electoral College Blues

Over the years I’ve been consistent with my disdain for the electoral college, although even I have had to admit that the alternative – the popular vote is inherently unfair. If we decided national elections by the popular vote, the winners would be decided by a handful of states like California, New York and Florida, who have the largest populations. The irony is that most people who have an issue with the electoral college, only find it problematic when their candidate loses. As someone said today on one of my social media threads, “Leave the foundation of our democratic process alone and just select better candidates,” Folks, that’s the bottom line. Quite frankly, I think Bernie Sanders could have beaten Trump, and Hillary Clinton could have beaten any of the other Republican candidates. It’s just the year of the Republican outsider & not the Democrat establishment. electoral-map

Then there’s the notion that the electoral college has it’s roots in racism, allegedly because it was enacted to benefit slave-holding states. That means its racist, to those so inclined to view most things through the prism of race. It’s one of the most ridiculous things I’ve heard in a long time. Even if it were true, slavery was abolished in 1865, and chattel slaves were property, not people. It’s incredibly bizarre that anyone would attempt to link a time in our history, where only white, male landowners could vote, to today’s elections. That’s like saying prohibition is responsible for today’s drunk drivers. Assuming  that all Americans want their vote to actually count, the electoral college is the best means for guaranteeing this.

Until next musing,

Talitha “TK” McEachin

 

 

 

 

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My Musings: Economic Matters, American Slavery & Black Wealth, Manufacturing Fear

Greetings friends,

As promised post before last, here are my latest musings from social media, using the new format of sharing a few quick postings rather than one longer piece so that I can spend more time writing fiction. Enjoy!

Talitha, why don’t you discuss economic matters more?

stacks_of_moneySometimes people ask me why I don’t speak out more on matters of the economy. I do, but those aren’t the social media posts that are popular. Most, if not all of our social woes in America, are inextricably bound to the fiscal ones anyway. I talk about fiscal matters to select audiences of people armed with the economic acumen to engage me. All else is a waste of my time. I can’t discuss the post-jobs economy, the ponzi scheme we affectionately call  Social “Security” quanitative easing, nor the mounting federal debt with people who retort with anecdotes, about their buying power, when the lack of wealth of certain groups in America is discussed. This usually comes from those whose cultural egos bruise easily, especially when our lack of wealth is pointed out by the likes of Donald Trump if I’m polite, any white person if I’m not. Many prefer that our fiscal, community, dirty laundry not be aired, and for some it’s a futile attempt to prove that race related poverty is mostly a myth. “I can keep up with the Jones’,” many insist. The keyword is “I”, which is irrelevant to the topic of what “we” can do, or have. Fortunately for me, I’m under no such delusion. An economic discussion is a moot one, when had with those who believe wealth can be measured by consumerism. This is America, where living beyond one’s means is the norm, and where many poor citizens spend frivolously, while many among the wealthy are frugal. We’ve got it all backwards folks, so one’s ability to consume has no place in an analysis of collective wealth. Some are asking me to discuss the blue sky, even though they’re stubbornly convinced that it’s green. Nope, I’m not doing that anymore, because it’s impossible to wake up people who are pretending to be asleep. Don’t fret though, such persons will never be alone. There’s always plenty of blissful room in Club Ignorance.

Slavery in America & Black Wealth:

Some Americans grossly underestimate the impact of centuries of chattel slavery in this shacklescountry on black folks, in terms of the lack of wealth as a whole. And before someone says “Africans sold other Africans into slavery,” or, “There were black/Native-American slave owners too,” “White people were chattel slaves too,” (utter nonsense, btw), or, “Look at immigrant group X and emulate them,”- note that these are all irrelevant, red herrings. Let your fingertips take you away from this discussion – this one’s for conscious grown-ups, not childish, talking point spouting, keyboard commandos. Everyone else, as my friend & mentor Steven Barnes (NY Times bestselling author of LION’S BLOOD & ZULU HEART) said to me a few years ago – “There’s no such thing as a wound that takes less time to heal than it took to inflict,”. Using those excuses, is like breaking the legs of one man in a race, then shooting the gun in the air for everyone to begin running. After the race & his obvious loss, the winners ask him, “Now why is it taking you so long to start running?”.

If you think that other groups, under identical conditions, would have fared better, you’re a part of the problem. If we believe that there’s no such thing as race, and it’s just a social construct, any other conclusions drawn point to a belief in the inferiority of black Americans, or Native Americans, who aren’t doing so well either. There’s no escaping that. For those who often ask me, “What can we do to help?”, you can start by acknowledging our humanity. When some did have wealth long ago – land (40 acres & a mule), economic prosperity (Black Wallstreet) or, were entrepreneurs (black owned businesses in the Jim Crow south) this was forcibly & violently taken from far too many. That’s not our fault, so you’ll have to excuse me if I’m weary of the whole “pull yourself up by your own bootstraps” rhetoric hurled at black Americans. We did that, and were re-victimized many times over LEGALLY. It’s still happening on some level today via the judicial system. Do some of us gain economic prosperity despite this? Absolutely! but that’s not the point. Individual triumphs are anecdotal, nothing more or less. Collective ones, however, are an indication of economic stability, which is needed to have & maintain generational wealth. That should be the goal. That is our inherited disadvantage. 

 

And last:

Manufacturing Fear: Hillary Clinton as POTUS & ISIS

isisI’m going to preface this by saying that this is more or less food for thought that requires some level of objectivity. In a recent discussion, a friend brought up his committment to vote for Donald Trump, because he thinks having a female president will open the door for more terrorist attacks from radical, Islamic jihadists. His logic and that of others, is that a woman as POTUS will give the appearance of weakness exceedingly more, from members of a culture & religion, in which women are totally subjugated & have very little freedom.This is within the context of an extremist, radical, Islamic microcosm, to be differentiated from the greater, non-radicalized Islamic culture. Obviously, all Muslims are not radicalized, and I don’t mind going further to say that most aren’t. My intuition initially says yes, they could view America as vulnerable with a woman at the helm, but that’s not reason enough for us to not elect a woman in any election. In fact, that line of reasoning is preposterous. Moreover, America may be embarking on its first female president, but we aren’t the first such country – that logic is lacking in precedents to buttress it. Having a female president may be perceived as a weakness by ISIS, and perhaps even domestic terrorists, but this can be advantageous in our battle against terrorism. Perception often doesn’t match reality. Doesn’t it benefit us to be falsely perceived as weaker? I’m not a fan of Clinton for a myriad of reasons, but this isn’t one of them. It can’t be. It’s a provocative assertion, and not altogether flawed, but it seems to me its more of a fear tactic than a cohesive, valid argument. Maybe I’m just not paranoid.Your thoughts?

Have a safe & productive weekend! Until next musing,

TK McEachin

 

 

 

 

 

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Small Town Georgia Travels, Racism & Politics

Small Town Georgia Travels, Racism & Politics
Friends,
I always check-in on social media whenever I travel within Georgia, or out of state for work, to help me log my travel hours accurately. When I do, a few people always message me if it’s a small town in southern Georgia, or most recently, up in the North Georgia mountains. They ask about the reception from southern whites in small towns because I am a black woman & they’ve heard of ugly racism in these places. I make these trips EVERY month for work & I can honestly tell you that I’ve never experienced any racism on a single trip. I’ve found the whites (and blacks, Hispanics, Asians) in these towns to be VERY friendly, helpful & inquisitive sometimes about the “big city” (Atlanta, Lord knows what they’d think of NY or LA lol). Some have never taken a flight in a commercial airplane. Many are farmers, or at least gardeners & you can buy whatever’s in season right from their land/trees. There are some of the best, home cooked, fresh food in restaurants run by some of these same farms. I connected with them because my Mom grew up on a farm in a small southern town in Alabama, where she and her 17 siblings worked extremely hard growing up, sometimes missing school to work on the farm. Meals were mostly what was raised, caught, made or grown on their land. Most of the people I’ve met don’t know who they’ll vote for this time around & have problems with both. I’ll actually be working with a local writer in Macon on a political newsletter for people in these areas. People wanted to know what I was writing. I’ve found that they care more about issues directly affecting them locally – the bigger stuff they tend to feel either apathetic about or powerless against. The former being mostly a result of the latter.
The only discussion of race (which was indirect) was with a few farmers who lamented changes in immigration laws in recent years, because the stricter changes ran off hard-working Hispanics who were here illegally, causing the farmers to lose lots of money in crops. The Hispanics who left were replaced by former convicted felons who needed work. The farmers get a tax incentive to hire them & the former convicts get much needed (and required) work. Most were black but a good number of them were white too. They complained about how the former convicts, no matter their race, worked less, harvested far less pounds of crops, took frequent cell phone & cigarette breaks and were generally lazy. They wanted their illegal immigrant workers back because they got way more work done in less time & were far more reliable. They also needed far less supervision. I got the distinct feeling that they’d vote for whichever political party had the best plans for managing illegal immigrants, allowing them to stay & work. I’ve sort of built relationships with some of these black & white small town southerners. Now, I’m in no way saying racism doesn’t exist in any of these places, I’m just saying that I haven’t experienced one drop of it & I’m not going to lie to make anyone feel good about a stereotype they hold. Sometimes racism is the persistence with which a stereotype is held, even in the face of evidence to the contrary, and on some level we all do (or have done) this.
Until next time or travels,
TM
 
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Posted by on August 5, 2016 in Politics, Society, Uncategorized

 

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Clarence Thomas: “Northern Liberal Elites Are More Racist Than Southerners”

Friends,

Clarence ThomasRecently, conservative Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas issued a statement stating that based on his experiences in both the North & South that “Northern Liberal Elites Are More Racist”. Many of you have asked my opinion so here goes:

One the one hand, many on the right are touting this as proof that racism is not so bad in the South & is exaggerated by the left. One the other hand many on the left are saying that this is further proof that Clarence Thomas is a sellout & that he is once again trying to assuage & appease white Conservatives. Well, the mistake Thomas makes (and this is not to take away from his experiences in both the North & South) is that his anecdotal evidence doesn’t mean that his experiences are the rule. Neither does mine or any of us. At best, he can say that this was his experience & concluding opinion based on that but that others may have had (or had/have) a different experience growing up in the South & North. See the difference? I could name at least 60-70 people who are the same age as Thomas whom I know personally, who would & have said differently.

It must also be taken into account that Thomas grew up in a somewhat isolated, predominantly black community near Savannah, Ga founded by freed slaves. Most of the people he grew up with were black, so his experience would be different from a black person who grew up in Montgomery, Atlanta or Birmingham during that time. It’s intellectually dishonest (and irresponsible) on his part & ours to ignore that. People are using his anecdotes as proof that liberal whites “are” more “racist”, a word that gets tossed around so frequently that it has all but lost it’s potency. Now, on the other hand, my friends on the left, to call Thomas a sellout or “Uncle Tom” (a misnomer really) or accuse him of lying to lessen the experiences of racism in the South or exaggerate those in the North is unfair as well. You’re the same people who came to Obama’s defense after he issued a statement in the aftermath of the Zimmerman verdict (and I agreed with you) that those attacking Obama’s experiences/anecdotes of racism/discrimination growing up were wrong to accuse him of lying. They weren’t there, they don’t know what he experienced & generally speaking, you simply cannot tell a person what their experiences was. Well, that same thing must be applied to Clarence Thomas! You can’t tell him what he did or did not experience growing up in the South or living in the North. He has no obligation to say that the South was more racist than the North just because he has black skin, especially if that was not his reality. His experience is his own & you can’t dictate it or take it away from him because it doesn’t follow a historical narrative. Please get that.
There’s an old saying in the South from that time, that “In the South they (whites) don’t care how close you get as long as you don’t get too high, in the North they (whites) don’t care how high you get as long as you don’t get too close” – Is one group of whites more racist than another? Well, it depends on who you ask but I say during that time you had some racism from both, most likely in equal amounts but not equivalent.That’s all I have to say to all about this. Until next time…

 
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Posted by on February 13, 2014 in In The News, Politics

 

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Right vs Left & The Black Community; Today’s Musings

Friends,

I know I’ve been away for several weeks and haven’t posted, because, as I shared weeks ago, I am steadily writing & working hard to meet deadlines for my upcoming novel, THE ELEMENTS. Today I had the opportunity to dialogue with other local black conservatives & I wanted to share my thoughts with you all (as I shared them on Facebook), so here goes:

I was speaking to a small group of local black Conservatives on a conference call today & we spoke about several topics, including race in America. We were speaking about some of the ills of the black community including the crime rates, the greater need in some communities for economic empowerment & other things like awareness on screening for things like HIV, breast/prostrate cancer…etc. Frustratingly (to me & one other) the conversation devolved to liberal bashing – specifically black liberal/Democrat bashing on the part of some, not all. It is so ironic to me that some black conservatives engage in this sort of thing constantly when the topic of race comes up & I saw a lot of that during the #Zimmerman trial & the year preceding it. 

Some will declare, “I’m just American, no need to identify racially” – I say to each his or her own in that regard & I’m certainly not the cultural police. These same people who make such statements will make a point on their blogs/websites & any media forum they are involved in to present themselves as a “black Conservative”. In other words, they self-identify by race when it’s convenient for them or will get them noticed more. They want to stand out & let’s face it, black conservatives on some level are treated like celebrities on the right. We are praised for standing out/up & going against the grain. Some love the notoriety that comes along with this in the black community, yet bash liberals for “always bringing up race” or identifying by race. 

We all (as far as I can tell) identify as black conservatives on the right (myself included) for different reasons or by instinct but until some start identifying only as conservative, race notwithstanding, I’ve had enough of their black liberal/Democrat bashing & admonishing when it comes to this topic, when many of us do the same things we accuse them of – right-wing style. I’m a lot of things, but I don’t bash blacks on the left to appease ANYONE, nor gain attention – I attack policies & ideology as I see fit & that’s why my liberal friends & I can have #calmversations. We debate but in a civil manner & I just wish there was more unity within the black community between black people on the left & right. One day, we’ll get there. I have hope.

Everyone have a safe, productive & wonderful weekend, be blessed!

 
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Posted by on October 4, 2013 in Philosophy, Politics, Society

 

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Absurdity: Emmett Till & Trayvon Martin

Friends,

I have tried to hold back my thoughts on the wave of pundits & celebrities comparing Trayvon Martin to Emmett Till because it really makes me want to curse & I’m trying to keep my language clean. From the NAACP to Beyonce to Toure…many are making this very fallacious and absurd comparison. The two cases are nothing alike & I have no idea how the Martin or the Till family feels about this, but if I were a member of the Till family in particular, I’d be insulted quite frankly.

There’s no comparison to a mob of white men abducting a fourteen year old boy out of his relative’s home in the middle of the night & lynching him for talking to a white woman in 1955, to a Hispanic man shooting an unarmed seventeen year old black teenager in self-defense (according to the jury verdict), during a fight in 2012. Let me say that I’m not one who agrees with the verdict entirely in the latter case (but I accept it) but juxtaposing Trayvon Martin & Emmett Till….really? Recently, there were pictures allegedly released by mistake, of Trayvon Martin’s dead body & I’m starting to think this was done on purpose, in order to manipulate the public into falling for such a comparison when there is none, as well as to incite outrage.I will not disrespect the seriousness of Emmett Till’s horrific lynching in that manner & shame on those doing just that.

The only similarity is that both cases caused a national (and international) uproar but the Till case catapulted the Civil Rights movement and people of all races started to stand up against the racial discrimination & murders of black people in the deep South. Some of my friends from different political ideologies have asked me about this, mostly my liberal friends & those are my thoughts. If you see the evidence in the Zimmerman case differently, fine. If you decide to protest fine, but leave Emmett Till out of it. The Emmett Till name/imagery is being used to manipulate America into seeing Zimmerman as one who has “lynched” a young black man & I think that’s irresponsible, end of story.

Although both are both tragedies…they are not the same:

 

 Trayvon Martin

Trayvon martins bead body

Emmett_Till

Emmitt Till's dead body

bryantmilam2

GZimmerman

 
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Posted by on July 24, 2013 in In The News, Politics, Society

 

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