Number 22 - December 26, 2002
|Faith-based path to the jailhouse
Anti-war Lite, and Hard-core
Trojan Horse TV
The size of the type may be changed by clicking on view at the top of
your browser and selecting "text size". The document will
print in the size you select.
Trent Lott - disowned. The GOP has wrapped him in his own soiled blanket
and dropped the orphan in the back alleyways of history, claiming they
never knew the boy. Trent, who? say Republicans, as they wave a dirty
rag, claiming to have wiped the slate clean.
The GOP's faith-based
funding juggernaut will resume with renewed aggression in the New Year,
packaged as the cornerstone, pro-Black program of a born-again
Republican Party. What George Bush wanted to say on December 12, in
Philadelphia, before he was interrupted by the Trent Lott unpleasantness,
is that the main historical victim of discrimination in America is -
religion! It is the script that his henchmen have been reading
all year to audiences of Black ministers. God needs some affirmative
action, and His clergy require federal contracts.
In January, faith-based
bribery legislation will re-emerge with a vengeance in both houses of
Congress. It is by far the most ambitious plan ever devised to destroy
the Black political consensus. As we wrote last week in "Trent
Lott Furor Threatens Faith-based Bribery Scheme":
churches are to be awarded federal contracts to perform social services,
setting in motion a permanent patronage system tied to the
party that made the payments possible - the GOP. Ministerial allegiances
would be expected to change, overnight, splintering the Black voting
The commentary struck
a chord with Aubrey J. Howard, CEO of Midtown Mental Health Center in
Memphis, Tennessee. Mr. Howard has a nose for cooked books.
Funding church based programs should be challenged, as it is a conflict
between church and state. Additionally, I can say factually, being
involved in lending money for churches, a lot of ministers will go
to jail when they are required to comply to federal accounting standards.
If African American ministers accept funds, they will be the most
scrutinized and made examples of as poor managers.
Last week we asked,
Who is going to defund the Right Rev. Dr. Greedygut, once he has been
rewarded by the GOP with a social service contract? In light of Mr.
Howard's letter, we might better ask, Who is going to bail out Rev.
Greedygut, when the vote-buying frenzy is over and the investigations
Dr. Bruce Prescott
is Webmaster of "Mainstream Baptists," the online journal
of the progressive branch of Southern Baptists. He found 's
on Trent Lott threatening Bush's faith-based bribery is brilliant,
insightful, and dead on target. I posted a link to it on the website
of the Mainstream Baptist Network's news page:
The journal is based
in Norman, Oklahoma.
From Maryland, medical
doctor Cuthbert Simpkins, writes:
commentary on Trent Lott. We need a revolution in the church to upgrade
the education, integrity, Afro-centricity and quality of our ministers.
Also we need to develop a religion that serves our needs. The present
dogma keeps us ignorant.
And another doctor
from Maryland, Salisbury's Ron Jarrett, believes that
is good medicine.
Thank you for
a wonderful breath of fresh air. I may not agree with everything you
say, but you say it so well, that it is clearly worth my time to see
what's on your mind. I am not a strongly religious man but the more
I read your publication I am reminded of the phrase, "They shall
know truth, and the truth shall set them free." I am sure from
your literary talents that the both of you could make a lot more money
working on a white man's dream. Which makes it all the more refreshing
to see two brothers working on a dream of their own.
On the other side
of the Lott controversy, however, there were strong tactical reasons
for keeping him in office. And that is, if all of the Republicans
were pushing for him to go then perhaps we ought to be pushing for
him to stay. They weren't pushing for him to go because he is and
was an avowed racist, virtually the whole of the Republican Party
is that, they were pushing for him to go because his leadership presence
and support of their racist positions politically lets the world in
on what their real agenda is.
It was heartening
to learn that our reprint of the article "Strom
Thurmond's Black Daughter" actually put a smile on a face named
Thurmond. Writer B. Thurmond is Black, proud, and anything but rootless.
I enjoyed the
article on the offspring of Strom Thurmond. Today I will meet with
family to begin research for a family reunion. My father's family
originated from Edgefield South Carolina and my maiden name is Thurmond.
I am certain that I am a descendent from the Thurmond Plantation.
A great people arose
from places just like that.
A swarm of new visitors
roamed and rustled around our pages, last week, thanks to a posting
the indispensable political resource published by Alexander Cockburn
and Jeffrey St. Clair. Our piece, "Anti-War
Hard Core & Anti-War Lite: Privilege, comfort and fear cause schisms,"
was, in part, designed to
express the most
extreme irritation at the nasty little people who, not content to
simply do something useful by organizing as many folks as they can
against Bush, feel it necessary to badmouth the organizers of October
26's demonstrations. At minimum, 100,000 and 50,000 people protested
in Washington and San Francisco, respectively, against the wishes
of the corporate media, which virtually boycotted the events. By proving
that the opposition was capable of mounting an effective popular response
to the Bush administration's war hysteria, the organizers may well
have changed the course of history and saved countless lives.
Our complaints were
directed against The Nation's David Corn and others who seem to believe
it is more important to wage tiny turf wars than to turn out masses
of anti-war demonstrators. It is a tendency among the white left that
many Blacks find repulsive.
reach into strange and foreign places to find interesting expatriates
like Mick Collins, who writes to us from Paris.
I thought you
might want to set things straight between Harry Belafonte and Malcolm
When Mr. Belafonte recently referred to Colin Powell as a 'house nigger',
a White House nigger at that, who exists at the whim and pleasure
of the Man -
though he may not have actually used the 'n' word - as being separate
and apart from the rest of us 'field niggers' who live to see the
Man dead and buried and our birthright returned to us, he was ripping
off Malcolm for a distinction that he made back in the day when all
colored folks weren't always that active in their own liberation -
and it might well apply to your 'Antiwar Hardcore' and 'Antiwar Lite'
And as much as
I'm with you all in stopping this war, I think it imperative to realize
this war has been continuous since WWII--and you really must
work something about the 10 year (and still ongoing) war in Balkans
into your critique (You know, No Yugoslav ever called me 'Nigger'!),
and only altered its forms and means of destruction from bombing,
invasion, sanctions, war crimes/reparations trials, back to bombing
Joan Lee, of St.
Charles, Missouri, also found
by way of CounterPunch. She's lost patience with the "brats"
(our term) who chatter from the sidelines of Anti-War Lite.
and I participated in the Oct 26 march in D. C. sponsored by the ANSWER
group, etc. It was a marvelous experience, despite the criticism we
all had to endure from the American Prospect, the Nation, and other
supposed progressive magazines.
In my opinion, a full 80% of the people there had no affiliation with
any of the sponsor groups, nor did they plan to form any, but all
of us will be eternally grateful that theses folks had labored so
long and hard to make the event happen. It was l00% better than anything
the pontificating purists could have arranged. I wrote them all expressing
my dismay and none even had the courtesy to respond. Too bad, eh?
Again, thanks for the great article.
Ron Jacobs is a
contributor to CounterPunch. He also sometimes reads the Lite stuff.
Thanks for the
commentary Antiwar Hardcore and Antiwar lite. I agree with your perspective
and believe it to be the primary sentiment among those who aren't
in the Corn, Berube, Gitlin, etc, camp.
Our December 12
Black Rightwing Forum: The grotesque devolution of a Black news program,"
caused quite a stir in African American journalistic circles. Richard
Prince's Journalism column, part of the authoritative Robert C.
Maynard Institute for Journalism in Education, noted that ABF "claims
that it is seen in 80 major television markets across the country -
reaching 70 percent of U.S. TV households. However, the show's Web site
doesn't say how many of those markets show it in the wee hours."
Even the wee hours
are too much exposure for a program that showcases Armstrong Williams
and Niger Innis as commentators, moderated by the closet conservative
Juan Williams. Pat Buchanan and other white Rightists drop in regularly
to dispense opinions on what purports to be "the only credible
weekend news source for African American perspectives on national issues."
For the last two
weeks, ABF's featured guest has been Margaret Cho, the Korean-American
has had enough of ABF.
You have made
me feel that I'm not completely out of step, or consciousness. I have
been expressing those very same views for years, but have been made
to feel that I'm just too bitter!! Thanks for putting America's Black
Forum in perspective. I stopped watching it because it made me nauseous.
Life has its bitter
pills, but we've got a New Year coming. Keep writing.