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The “Obamaphone” Nonsense

The “Obamaphone” Nonsense

So recently, I retracted a prior criticism of former POTUS Barack Obama – the whole “food stamp president” nonsense. While this post isn’t a retraction, I want to share my thoughts on another erroneous label affixed to him – the infamous “Obamaphone”. The ironic thing about this, is that it’s origins are rooted back to 1984 when some Americans were still in “Will we ever see a black president?” mode. A “Barack Obama” if you will, was still a dream. 1984? Yep. When Ronald Reagan was president. Some even argue that it goes back as far as Roosevelt, but I digress. That year, the FCC created the Lifeline Assistance program. That’s the actual name of the “Obamaphone” program, technically. 

Obviously, cellular phones weren’t ubiquitous as they are now, in 1984, which is why the program provided free landline phone service, mainly to senior citizens. Interestingly enough, after eight years of the Obamaphone misnomer, so many remain ignorant of its history.  Am I the only one who’s never heard of an “Reaganphone”? What about a “Bushphone”? “Clintonphone” perhaps? What about a “Trumpphone”? (that sounds like the world’s worst megaphone ever). You haven’t because they were never labeled as such, even though the program existed in every presidency since Reagan. In fact, Safelink Wireless offered the first such cellular (keyword alert!) phone service in Tennessee in 2008, near the end of Bush’s second term. Barack Obama wasn’t elected until November of 2008. The program started three months earlier. 

There are some very, obvious motives and suspicious undertones, if I’m polite, associated with slapping this erroneous, derogatory misnomer onto the first black president, and literally none of his predecessors, but for now I’m not gonna go there (Hmm, no pun intended, but, did I just do that?). Now to be fair, the number of participants in the program, did increase significantly under the Obama administration, but that’s to be expected, with the expansion of any government program to assist the destitute in a recession. It’s a domino effect. If you had no problem with the program under Reagan, both Bush’s or Clinton, it’s simply hypocritical to have whined about it for the last eight years under Obama. I’ll be discussing three more things, I, and/or my political “macro tribe” got wrong, or, that were generally misunderstood or wrong when it comes to Obama. Then I’ll balance it by discussing the same number of things I stand by firmly, as far as my criticism of his presidency goes. Stay with me folks, this is about to get really interesting…

 
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Posted by on July 7, 2017 in Politics, Society, Uncategorized

 

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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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Black Conservatives for Trayvon Martin Share Their Thoughts

Friends,

zimmerman martinLast year when I wrote about the ‪George Zimmerman‬ case for Yahoo (in three parts), I was definitely, initially more defensive of Zimmerman but urged that we all wait for the facts. Here are some facts gathered by ‪black conservatives‬ who side with the ‎Trayvon Martin‬ family/prosecution & do not believe Zimmerman’s self-defense claims. Interesting & admittedly, some of these are things that brought up questions in my mind & others I didn’t know, like the fact that there was no grass tall enough to hide Martin’s 5’11’ height (#19 on this list). Personally, I think that many on the left & right have had a knee-jerk reaction, to automatically oppose the other due to political tribalism. The fact that ‪Al Sharpton‬ was involved in this case (he was asked to) I think also caused some to oppose him because they don’t like him or his involvement in prior cases. I don’t have enough fingers & toes to count the number of times a person (usually on the right) has brought up the Tawana Brawley case & Al Sharpton’s involvement in it, when discussing this case.  In philosophy, we call that a genetic fallacy, which is rejecting an idea because of the source rather than it’s merits. For some, since Al Sharpton is involved & believes Zimmerman is guilty, Zimmerman must therefore, be innocent of murder & his claims of self-defense more plausible. Do you see how fallacious that is? Sharpton being wrong about Tawana Brawley doesn’t mean he’s wrong about George Zimmerman, or that Zimmerman acted in self-defense as he claims.

Likewise, some on the left will not even consider the possibility that Zimmerman may have shot in self-defense & won’t view this in any other way other than through their own political or racial prism. If the right-wing mostly supports Zimmerman, he must be guilty. I have examined both sides & can’t make up my mind completely, but I don’t believe Zimmerman’s version of events entirely, and I won’t pretend to because that’s the consensus on my political “side”. Equally, I won’t condemn him just because I’m black or the fact that most on the left support him either. I’ll wait for the verdict & accept it. We must respect the rule of law, not the media or the mob – on either side. For my liberal friends who think all black conservatives defend Zimmerman, you’re wrong. In the end, only the thoughts of the six, female jurors matter.

Here is the list compiled by Black Conservatives for Trayvon as it was posted, but I’ll add that #23 is not sharpton and martin familyentirely accurate because there is video evidence that Trayvon Martin was wearing his hoodie, at least part of the time he was in the store. That doesn’t prove any criminality on his part though. It was raining outside and perhaps he chose not to take it off because he wasn’t going to be in there for very long. In any case, it’s not illegal to wear a hoodie and I wear them all the time (and I’m a black American), particularly in the winter while jogging, am I a criminal or thug too? If anyone is wondering why I am sharing this, it’s simple – for balance. I’ve used plenty of keystrokes already in Zimmerman’s defense & I won’t censor my uncertainty regarding his claims. It’s called objectivity:

Trayvon Martin Killing: Fact Sheet

***GET THE FACTS***

This tragedy and subsequent trial has brought race relations in America to a fever pitch. Most people are responding according to their cultural and racial biases and NOT the facts of the case. The following, documented facts cannot be disputed. If you are interested in truth and justice, review the following facts and see if they do not reshape some of your opinions. No matter what your race or political affiliation, the following facts cannot be disputed:

1. Zimmerman called the police to report Martin’s “suspicious” behavior, which he described as “just walking around looking about.” Walking around in the neighborhood is not a crime nor suspicious for a 17 yr old teenager… at 7:30pm.

Zimmerman was in his car when he saw Martin walking on the street. He called the police and said: “There’s a real suspicious guy. This guy looks like he’s up to no good, on drugs or something. It’s raining and he’s just walking around looking about… These a**holes always get away”
(Orlando Sentinel)

2. Zimmerman pursued Martin against the explicit instructions of the police dispatcher:

Dispatcher: “Are you following him?”
Zimmerman: “Yeah”
Dispatcher: “OK, we don’t need you to do that.”
(Orlando Sentinel)

3. Prior to the release of the 911 tapes, Zimmerman’s father released a statement claiming ”At no time did George follow or confront Mr. Martin.”
(Sun Sentinel)

4. Zimmerman was carrying a 9 millimeter handgun. Martin was carrying a bag of Skittles and a can of iced tea.
(ABC News)

5. Martin weighed 153 pounds at the time of death. Zimmerman weighs 250 pounds and was 204 pounds at the time of shooting.
(Orlando Sentinel)

6. Martin’s English teacher described him as “as an A and B student who majored in cheerfulness.” He was not a ‘bad’ or ‘troubled’ student. He got a mandatory suspension from school because he had an empty bag w/ marijuana residue.
(Orlando Sentinel)

7. Martin had no criminal record.
(New York Times)

8. Zimmerman “was charged in July 2005 with resisting arrest with violence and battery on an officer. The charges appear to have been dropped.” Additionally, he had been previously entered into an anger management program for domestic violence assault on a girlfriend.
(VIDEO: http://www.wptv.com/dpp/news/state/george-zimmerman-was-arrested-before-trayvon-martin-case-previously-accused-of-domestic-violence)

9. Zimmerman called the police 46 times between Jan. 1, 2011 and the shooting on February 25th, 2012.
(Miami Herald)

10. According to neighbors, Zimmerman was “fixated on crime and focused on young, black males.”
(Miami Herald)

11. Zimmerman “had been the subject of complaints by neighbors in his gated community for aggressive tactics”
(Huffington Post)

12. A police officer “corrected” a key witness. “The officer told the witness, a long-time teacher, it was Zimmerman who cried for help, said the witness. ABC News has spoken to the teacher and she confirmed that the officer corrected her when she said she heard the teenager shout for help.”
(ABC News)

13. Three witnesses say they heard a boy cry for help before a shot was fired. “Three witnesses contacted by The Miami Herald say they saw or heard the moments before and after the Miami Gardens teenager’s killing. All three said they heard the last howl for help from a despondent boy.”
(Miami Herald)

14. The officer in charge of the crime scene also received criticism in 2010 when he initially failed to arrest a lieutenant’s son who was videotaped attacking a homeless black man.
(New York Times)

15. The police did not test Zimmerman for drugs or alcohol. A law enforcement expert told ABC that Zimmerman sounds intoxicated on the 911 tapes. Drug and alcohol testing is “standard procedure in most homicide investigations.”
9ABC News0

16. George Zimmerman took Mixed Martial Arts classes for at least a year before the incident. A physician assistant who treated George Zimmerman’s injuries the day after he said he shot and killed Trayvon Martin in self-defense testified that she had treated Zimmerman before, and that he told her he’d had been involved with mixed martial arts several times a week.
(Central Florida News)

17. The detective originally on the case was stopped by the chief of police from filing charges and arresting Zimmerman for manslaughter. When he insisted on filing the charges, he was demoted from detective back to night beat officers.
(VIDEO: CNN https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nG3l8g2S5Kc)

18. Zimmerman claims to have been looking for an address in a gated neighborhood with ONLY 3 streets that he is the self proclaimed neighborhood watch captain of… and he has lived there for 4 years. Also, the street he claimed to be looking for an address from had obvious street numbers on it.
(Trial Evidence)

19. His original claim was that he was sucker punched after Martin jumped from the bushes and attacked him. There are no bushes tall enough to hide his 5′ 11” body in the neighborhood anywhere near the incident.
(CNN)

20. The gun George Zimmerman used was designed to be loaded and ready to shoot. It was also concealed in a holster behind his back. His gun had to have been loaded when he pulled it out to shoot Martin, which is inconsistent with his assertion that he was afraid of the unarmed teenager.
(VIDEO: CNN http://ac360.blogs.cnn.com/2013/07/03/george-zimmermans-gun/)

21. The actual shooting took place +40 feet away from where Zimmerman claimed he was attacked and immediately knocked down and claims he was unable to flee from. They had to have scuffled and rolled on the ground in front of 2 different residences (leaving no dna or forensic evidence behind) before being shot.
(Trial Evidence)

22. In addition to the 3 different accounts from Zimmerman not adding up, Zimmerman claims that he was screaming for help as he reached for his gun and shot the boy. In the phone recording, the screaming for help immediately stopped once the gun was fired. He says that the threat was eliminated and therefore he didn’t need to scream anymore. But, he was adamant that he didn’t know that he shot him or killed him when interviewed by the police.
(Trial Evidence)

23. Though dark, it was 7:30pm on a Sunday evening. He was walking, not running, in a neighborhood that he was SUPPOSED to be in as he was heading back home to take the candy back to his 12 yr old (soon to be) step brother. According to the video in the store, he didn’t have his hoodie on. That didn’t take place until it started raining.
(Trial Evidence)

24. Zimmerman’s original attorney’s decided NOT to represent him once they spoke to him and found out the facts of the case. This was dismissed in the media as them being ‘opportunist’ and only wanting publicity.

Click HERE to visit “Black Conservatives for Trayvon”

Everyone have a blessed & productive day! Until next time…

 
 

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“But You’re Black & the Tea Party is Racist!”

Consevative Libertarian blogger Talitha McEachin

Consevative Libertarian blogger Talitha McEachin

As a black woman who is a conservative, Republican & Tea Party member (Note: I’ll be changing my registration to Independent soon actually & recommend it to everyone), I have endured some very vicious attacks from some on the left, especially from other black people, but also from whites as well. As a conservative with a libertarian lean on some issues I have endured vicious attacks from some on the right as well but I digress. That’s not to say that all black conservatives endure this, but I feel confident in saying that the majority have. That has never deterred me and to be fair, I have met many on the left who have disagreed in a civil manner & even agree with me on some things. All on the left do not attack me for my political affiliation, not by far. Lately though, several on the left have emailed me or sent me messages on social media asking “Why are you a member of the racist Tea Party?” or “How can you be black and be a Tea Party member?” to which I have answered calmly to some, although it really irritated me to be honest. Nonetheless, instead of answering every individual message like this, I decided to share my ranted response on my blog, so that anytime someone asks me this, I can simply share the link & continue the dialogue, if necessary, after they have read this response, so here it goes:

FYI: The “Tea Party” movement was started in 2009. It is only named after the 1773 Boston Tea Party but has not been around that long. It is a grassroots, political movement with no central leadership, not a political party & ANYONE who believes in adherence to the constitution, reducing spending & taxes as well as the national debt & deficit is welcome. Are there racists in the Tea Party? I’m sure there are in some groups, but the same can be said for most, if not all large, grassroots organizations. That’s like walking into a full sports stadium and asking “Is there anyone in here that’s NOT a sports fan?” Well, sure there probably is, but obviously most in attendance are sports fans. Get my drift?

I’m really tired of the insistence on the part of some on the left, that the Tea Party exists for the sole purpose of racism. If you don’t agree with the platform fine, but it’s not a “racist” organization. When people on the left tell me this, it’s very insulting, because essentially you’re saying that as a black person, I’m too stupid to know what’s good for me politically, which is something I hear black liberals lament about quite often, regarding the right, when they are accused of being on a “liberal plantation”. I don’t like either charge & I would never be a part of anything inherently racist. If you want me to take you seriously when you offer criticism of the GOP, conservatism or the Tea Party, please give me more than accusations of racism.

Even if such charges have merit, that doesn’t mean the right’s position on any issue is automatically wrong. If a Neo Nazi stood up and said “The national debt is $16,784,436,417,497.89 trillion dollars as of April 20th 2013 and we must reduce spending” is it not true just because a Neo Nazi said it? Stop it with labeling an entire group of people racist just because they are white and/or right-wingers and start making sound arguments against issues & policy. I’m really tired of the whining from some & would greatly appreciate it if questions regarding my political affiliations did not include my race, which is irrelevant. Black people are not politically or otherwise, monolithic. Deal with it.

 
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Posted by on April 20, 2013 in Politics

 

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Black Conservatives & Liberals, Listen Up!

Friends,

Consevative Libertarian blogger Talitha McEachin

Conservative Libertarian blogger Talitha McEachin

One of the things that I have learned from interacting with black liberals, libertarians and Independents (of course I’ve interacted with whites, Hispanics & Asians who subscribe to these ideologies too I’m just talking about black people right now) is that they are not just ignorant fools whom, if they would only subscribe to my way of thinking and my value system, they’d be liberated. I have also observed that many of them share some of the same values and conservative principles that I do and some do not.

Liberals and conservatives have different value systems, so their political views are based on those different value systems, but certainly are not limited to them. I am convinced, that most Americans are neither extreme as the media would have us believe. Most people are a combination of political views and have things that they are conservative about as well as liberal. Personally, I’m a conservative libertarian who has been labeled a RINO, far right winger, moderate and liberal even, depending on who’s hurling the label and what the topic is. I tend to agree with the late, great Octavia Butler when she said:

“People have the right to call themselves whatever they like. That doesn’t bother me. It’s other people doing the calling that bothers me.

I stand with conservatives on abortion and I don’t want to be forced into complicity in such an immoral act by the use of my tax dollars to pay for them. I believe the resolution to the same sex marriage issue should be libertarian in nature. I agree more with liberals on global warming.Everyone should carefully examine each thing they believe without the bias of political labels or fear of rejection by their “political tribe”.

Black conservatives as a whole need to understand that the notion that our liberal counterparts are just ignorant as a whole, is patently false. Black liberals who think that black conservatives are mere “sellouts”, “Uncle Toms” or “boot-lickers” need to understand that not only is Uncle Tom a misnomer, such stereotypes are also patently false. I have no reason or evidence which leads me to believe that either group is more or less intelligent, or succumbs to name-calling or ignorant behavior, any more than the other. I know people from all groups mentioned who are more intelligent than I am. 

Black folks (and any community can apply this), I say all of this to say, that such stereotypes & self-hatred within the black American community, gets in the way of intelligent discourse, brother/sisterhood and a collective, powerful response to the ills of our communities. All of us are needed to make a difference. My Democrat, Republican, Independent, Libertarian, Conservative & Liberal (and any other combination that exists) brothers and sisters, united we stand, divided we fall: make a choice.

 
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Posted by on March 19, 2013 in Philosophy, Politics

 

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