Issue Number 27 - January 30, 2003

Condoleezza: Traitor, or not?
Letters from the anti-war front
Rev. Dr. Greedygut redux












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Our readers seem to have made a collective resolution to write more letters to in the New Year. They have succeeded in creating a column that is chock-a-block with opinion and wit, well worth the visit.

Last week's lead commentary, "Condoleezza Rice: The Devil's Handmaiden," stirred a pot that we believe has long been too tepid for the political health of Black America. "If we cannot be moved to revulsion by brazen acts of treason," we wrote, "then we cannot hope to exercise the power of a coherent political force. Condoleezza Rice is the purest expression of the race traitor. No polite description is possible."

Anthony Ware welcomed the opportunity to denounce George Bush's handpicked, alternative Black "leadership."

Condoleezza Rice is definitely a Race Traitor!!! But, where are Black Progressives and Leftists criticism of her treason?? Other than , Dr. Manning Marable and Dr. Ron Walters, strong Left criticism is absent. Furthermore, many loyal opposition leftists/progressives are celebrating and applauding Rice's appointment as National Security Advisor. This reeks of blatant Class Solidarity. We saw the same type of rank political behavior by the Civil Rights establishment regarding Clarence Thomas's nomination and confirmation to the Supreme Court. His decisions on the Court are opposite African American interests. Ditto for Rice!!

African Americans can't continue to cheer individual achievements, even though color lines have been broken, especially since appointees will sycophantically serve interests and themselves to the detriment of the race. The White Man's party is skillfully appointing Race Traitors while many African Americans are rejoicing. It's high time that Justice be served cold and swift to Race Traitors like Condoleezza Rice.

Michael Kern agrees with , that the press are talking to the wrong people about Bush's affirmative action policy.

Your article was well written and obviously deeply thought out. Though your point seemed subtle, it was right on point. During the time of the talk about the President's comments, no elected official was given any real press coverage, while hand-selected, obligated, non-elected persons spoke for all African Americans. Frightening!

Condoleezza sends a cold shiver through Lance Beebe, in Boston. But, being a white guy, he didn't know if it was his place to vent on the matter.

I have been feeling this in my bones for a long time, but no black commentators are stepping up and saying what's really happening. Where are the black leaders? No one will listen to a white person talk about how the GOP is using minority appointments to fool voters. We need minority leaders to make a case against putting the WMP [White Man's Party] in power. It's only going to get worse for minorities under the rule of the GOP.

We're glad to see folks using our preferred acronym for the Republican Party. Beebe's remarks go straight to the question at the core of our commentary: How long will authentic Black leadership continue to treat with genteel civility the Black front men and women who are eager tools of a savage, Hard Right strategy? How many acts of betrayal will it take for polite Black society to be "moved to revulsion" - and say so.

Such questions appear to have crossed Norman Nithman's mind, as well.

I really enjoyed your article, as it was the first one I've seen that reflects my opinion of her. It seems like there is no line that she is unwilling to cross in service to her masters. The most disgusting thing I've ever heard her say is when she referred to her family having to defend themselves against "Democrat nightriders" in the South when she spoke at the GOP convention. That may have been the case, but she failed to mention that she was a Democrat herself until 1982 or so, or that most of those nightriders switched parties in the wake of LBJ's and the old GOP's civil rights efforts.

I also took a few minutes to read the articles on Randall Kennedy [in ] and was again pleasantly surprised to find opinions that were similar to my own and that have not been otherwise discussed in the media. I certainly intend on visiting your site often in the future and telling my friends and colleagues about it.

Mr. Nithman was referring to our series of commentaries on Randall Kennedy's literary assaults on Black dignity and sensibilities. (See "The N-Word 3 Ways," August 22, 2002.)

Andy Deck thinks we are being too selective, in singling out National Security/Black Affairs Advisor Rice.

On the face of it, of course, this editorial by The Black Commentator is on the mark. But when it comes down to it, everyone in Bush's cabinet has sold her/his soul for personal advancement. Rather than demonizing any one in particular, I think it's reasonable to step back and denounce the whole repulsive juggernaut. If only they could have landed careers in sports management!

Mr. Deck is, of course, free to pick his own demons. Black America's problem is that the ruling party and the media conspire to prevent us from picking our own leaders. Condoleezza Rice is at the center of this scheme - that is, until the Republicans pick another Black person to play the role.

Timothy Young wants to close the curtain on Bush's Black Review.

We as a people still look at images and not the message behind the images. The Bush crime family are murderers who should be impeached, if we had a media with a spine we would be impeaching these criminals, Powell and Rice included. They are complicit in the mayhem that plagues this country and especially the black family. I thought your voice did not exist. Thank you, I shall be a continuing member of Black Commentator.

Lots of newcomers found our site from postings at their favorite political hangouts. Alexander Cockburn and Jeffrey St. Clair published the Rice piece in full on Counterpunch, their invaluable address, bringing us to the attention of Debbie Shatila, from Virginia.

Concerning your recent article in Counter Punch I would like to add something. Namely that the reason the Republicans have been so effective in their "black strategy" is not only because they control the "white corporate media," but because this strategy of theirs has worked before.

To give two recent historical examples: it worked in dividing and dispersing the women's movement, and it has worked on the "Reagan Democrats," or blue collar whites. I can only hope that the Republican strategy doesn't work again, which is to say to pit Blacks against each other. This is a very old game they are playing.

As a white person, my perspective is that the right wing Republican objective is not only to suppress black people, but to severely weaken the left and all opposition as a whole, further. The fact that the Black Caucus in Congress, (thank goodness), has been so vocal in speaking up for their beliefs, has made them, (and Blacks in general) an even bigger target of late.

The Black Caucus has been carrying the banner for all liberal Democrats, and if it weren't for them, the Democrats would be totally without any merit whatsoever, and the Republicans know it and see it as a threat.

Robert Powell is another example of white revulsion at the role Condoleezza Rice so willingly plays in Bush's race farce.

As a white Southerner, civil rights worker and peace protester, let me say "You hit the nail on the head" in your comments on Rice. I went to school in segregated Birmingham and wondered how we could all go to church, yet do nothing when the bus driver got up and moved the sign back in the bus to let white folks sit down, making the black folks stand up. When I asked my mom why that was, she said, "Because that's the way it is." Rice comes from my hometown, and is the female equivalent of the Uncle Tom Clarence Thomas. My heart bleeds for such betrayal. What is almost funny is that my classmates who called me "traitor" when I integrated Woolworth's and protested the Vietnam War and this one as well, now look at a fellow Birmingham native, and admire her: a "colored" woman who represents their ideals, but would never have been there had they been able to reverse integration laws. Wonder if they ever see the paradox in that.

Reuben Smith can't get the picture out of his head: Rice, sitting behind Bush in a Black church, throwing kisses at the congregation on MLK Monday.

Anyone who calls themselves African or African American should be mad as Hell with the display at the Black church with the Bush man. The Black (maybe) preachers are pimps of the people. Not all but too many of them. This is not a new statement for me. I have said this for years. Fifty percent of the problem is the pew. When will we wake up? Ms. Rice? No comment. The commentary said it all.

John Kaminski is an Internet columnist whose work appears in Rense, Scoop, Online Journal and other progressive websites.

I love getting your newsletter, and I especially loved the piece about Condoleezza Rice. I think your voice is a lot more important than you may realize, because you consistently advocate for humane positions most of the other so-called liberal voices in the media discard when it's inconvenient for them, or they don't think it will play well at the polls.

I'm sending the Rice piece around to my list as an excellent peek at the hypocrisy of the Bush cabal. I hope it will help expand your readership.

Yvonne Black sees a kind of brain drain underway - and a moral dilemma, as well.

Thanks for writing such an insightful article; it is clearly one of your best. You captured very succinctly what is really going on here. As an African-American who takes great pride in the achievements of our people it makes me very sad to see such talents as Mr. Powell and Ms. Rice wasted on such a corrupt administration. Does power and access mean so much to them that they would support such blatant racist and unconstitutional - not to mention immoral - policies. If they are the best representatives of African-American achievement, we really do have a long way to go.

Susan Balmer prefers a psychoanalytical approach to the Condoleezza syndrome.

My own impression of Ms. Rice from seeing her only on "Meet the Press", etc., is that I wonder if she is really human or a robot - she is as "cold as ice" and I've never seen her demonstrate a single emotion. She just keeps rephrasing the Bush administration's platform only in different terms with no emotion at all - as I've said, I've wondered if she's some kind of puppet.

We agree that any Black person who has willingly spent two decades in the company of the Bush family and associates cannot help but be diminished by the experience. It happens that a noted clinical psychologist/psychotherapist, Alvin Wyman Walker, PhD, PD, PC, is among 's readership.

"Condoleezza Rice: The Devil's Handmaiden (or more accurately, Black Nanny)" was a superb piece. Keep up the excellent work.

C. Morris confirms the good doctor's diagnosis.

Fantastic article! It also happens to be true.

Michael Dickinson was born in England, but reads in Istanbul, Turkey where he makes a living as a teacher of English. Dickinson puts his hand to collage and offered his comment on The Devil's Handmaden with the following image:

Along with writing, Dickinson has had several exhibitions of his collage work, examples of which can be seen at his Website.

Friends of Condoleezza

As expected, the perennial "crabs in a barrel" complaint arrived in the mailbox, posted by Dr. Agatha Carroo, of Dimensions News in Raleigh, North Carolina.

You are true "Uncle Toms". Why is it that we Blacks imitate the behavior of crabs? If one attempts to escape from the barrel, the others pull him/her back in. I am tired of the so-called black politics that attempts to postulate that we should all think alike. Why don't you rant and rave against the "rappers" who call black women bitches and 'ho's and are pure representations of who we are. You want to spend your hollow time in an assassination of character of someone whose brief case you are not fit to carry.

There is nothing in Condoleezza's briefcase except stacks of instructions from George Bush. And isn't it amusing how the crab-watch crowd can't help flailing their own pincers, sending the poor Hip Hop artists straight to bottom of the barrel, and derogating to the sub-bellhop class.

Not so long ago, the old "crabs" condemnation had weight. Back in the days when African American elected officials were few and invitations to sit on elite boards near non-existent, Black appointments to prestigious positions were justifiably celebrated:

As a people historically excluded from high titles, Blacks have applauded every African American "first" as a collective victory. This was a logical and correct response to the solid wall of white refusal to tolerate the presence of Black faces in high places. In such circumstances - which still prevail today in vast swaths of American society - individual advancement actually does represent a kind of collective triumph.

Today, with Black elected office holders numbering near 10,000 (only about 50 of them Republicans), the Right's strategy is to appoint servile Blacks to high-profile positions, in a transparent attempt to create an alternative Black leadership. Condoleezza Rice proved her usefulness to this strategy by giving Bush her meaningless blessing on affirmative action. The media played the event as if a representative Black American voice were talking, rather than a White House hireling.

Through some convolution of reasoning, Rice's eager service to an anti-Black administration is lauded as "independent thinking." Rev. Ceasar I. LeFlore III sent a message titled, "In Defense of a Black Woman."

I find the brutal and unfounded attacks against Condoleezza Rice and other black conservatives disappointing, and unfortunate to say the least. I know that some in the African - American community are bound and determined to remain faithful to the liberal democrats, no matter how empty and repetitive their promises are to us. To argue against that unwarranted loyalty would be a waste of time. But it always astounds me how independent thinking blacks who do not conform to that party line are viscously attacked by people who seem to resent their independent thinking as treason. Why can they not be afforded the same nobility of motive as any other black thinker who is sensitive to our social concerns, only having a difference of opinion on how best to arrive at solutions for them? Is there not room for more than one opinion in the black community?

The selective outrage as to what is unacceptable black behavior is laughable. Some would dare to castigate Ms. Rice for publicly voicing an opinion different from their own concerning affirmative action, which is her right. But where is the outrage when Jesse Jackson validates black genocide through his support of those in the American eugenics movement who conceived and implemented "The Negro Project," developed to control and reduce black population in America? Why are so many of us silent when Jackson fathers children outside of wedlock, knowing that the 75% illegitimacy rate in our community has devastated it almost beyond repair?

The mistreatment of this brilliant black woman, Ms. Rice - who is arguably the most powerful woman in the world - is an outrage. I would think that you would be proud of black political achievement when you realize that we now have blacks in real positions of power in this country, which is unprecedented. We now have a black Supreme Court justice, Secretary of State, and National Security Advisor to name just a few. There is a great chance that the next Vice-president of the United States will be black. Black conservatives care deeply for our community and want to see it truly empowered beyond the empty promises of those who claim to care for us. It's unfortunate that many of us can't see and respect that.

Condoleezza Rice is an appointed weapon wielded in opposition to "Black political achievement," the Republican Party's alternative to actual, existing Black leadership. We suspect, however, that some of us would cheer if a Black were appointed Lord High Executioner of African Americans.

Note that Rev. LeFlore, while deploring 's "brutal and unfounded attacks" on Rice, in the next breath charges a Black minister - whose leadership credentials are backed up by millions of Democratic primary votes - with complicity in "black genocide."

The old crab barrel is sounding more and more like a blood and guts juke joint on Friday night.

Armstrong Williams' Coup de Grits

If the corporate brand of Black appointive politics touted by consultant-propagandist Armstrong Williams gains traction, the Right may one day select its designated Black "leaders" from a catalogue - produced, of course, by Armstrong Williams. ("Armstrong Williams' Big Move: Black Personnel Director for GOP Inc, January 16.) Williams has maneuvered himself into position "as the central player in the party's drive to recruit Black candidates for electoral and appointive office."

Williams' own raving, rightwing views, we wrote, are shared by "no significant segment of Black America," including few among the ten percent or so that identify themselves as Republicans.

Damon Owens, of Houston, had these thoughts on our assessment of Williams:

I just recently discovered your website and now I'm scrambling to get caught up on the intriguing commentary presented here. In your introduction to the e-mail responses you received on your recent Armstrong Williams piece, you referred to Williams as "the most widely despised Black man in the nation." I'm curious as to how he achieved that title, considering the fact that there are quite a few contenders for it. They include Niger Innis, Ken Hamblin, Joseph Perkins, the so-called Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson, Ward Connerly, and last but not least, Clarence Thomas. With a cast of characters like this, I'd say choosing the most widely despised is quite a challenge. Keep up the great work!

Half in jest, we suggested that might hold a contest for "Most Despicable" Black front person for the GOP. For the "Most Lasting Harm Done to Black Interests" award, Clarence Thomas is certain to win, hands down. Supreme Court justices serve for life.

Bush Affirmative Racism

For millions of African Americans, affirmative action is anything but an abstraction.
Cheryl F. Dudley writes to us from Norristown, Pennsylvania. Her parents attended historically Black Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, North Carolina. Ms. Dudley is an Ivy League graduate who assumes that she benefited in some way from affirmative action.

George W. Bush's action against the University of Michigan coupled with his throwing a bone (i.e., pledging to allocate more money) to HBCUs is making an educational segregationist (separatist) statement in respect to access to higher education. In other words, we are being sent the clouded message that we are not welcome into so called white schools that exercise the "affirmative action" principles of giving easier access to persons who have resources such as money, alumni connections, the advantage of private, prep or well funded public school educations. Black folks will then have one choice in terms of higher education: the choice of my parents and other forebearers.
This critique of Bush's action is made more painful in light of the reality that most HBCUs are severely under-funded and are struggling to keep afloat in the midst of changing economic, sociopolitical realities. It is yet another dirty trick on Bush's part. A trick he is willing to play time and time again - funneling money into private enterprises in order to taunt the "Rev. Dr. Greedyguts" to show their salaciousness, as well as parading and exploiting the high profile Blacks in his cabinet or advisory circle. I think it time to call him (George W.) again on this one.

The Right Rev. Dr. Greedygut

For those of you who have not yet been introduced to the Right Rev. Dr. Greedygut, we refer you to our January 2 issue. The Reverend is a stand-in for the category of Black clergy that George Bush hopes to entice into Republican ranks with faith-based blandishments.

Dan Welch is already familiar with the character. Mr. Welch writes to us from Salem, Massachusetts.

While I agree with your alarm at the potential fracturing of the black political consensus, I may be a bit more optimistic (or dismissive) regarding the right wing's transparent and clumsy efforts in the faith-based initiative. My own feeling is that, even if the initiative passes, people will just take the money and run. More importantly, our opposition is based largely on the well-reasoned assumption that it is a sham, a diversion unlikely to have any impact on the material reality of the lives of people it purports to help. Even if the Democrats are too stupid and self-defeating to block the faith-based scheme, this fact will quickly be borne out.

Dan Welch and his wife, Julia Nambalirwa Lugudde, run The Greenhouse School, in Salem.

Anti-War, Anti-Racism

Last week's The Issues commentary, "An Anti-Racist Peace Movement", praised the organizers of the January 18 demonstrations in San Francisco and Washington for being demonstrably "serious about creating a genuinely multi-racial movement against the pirates who control the U.S. government." Of the 30 or so A.N.S.W.E.R. coalition speakers on the Washington Mall, at least 17 were African Americans. "A.N.S.W.E.R. stated plainly, for all the world to see," we wrote, "that anti-racism is a core principle of the movement they seek to build."

A.N.S.W.E.R. picked up our piece, and sent it around. C.E. DeSophia got a copy, in Richmond California.

I just read the article taken from the Black Commentator about the 1/18 peace marches, which International ANSWER sent out to their e-mail list today. While I celebrate with you that there were so many black speakers on the podium, I was very sad to see how few African-Americans were in the crowd in San Francisco. The same was true at the October anti-war march here.

The war Bush intends to fight will negatively impact African-Americans - even more than other Americans - in many ways. I hope a way is found to encourage Black Americans to protest the war and to stand publicly against racism wherever it is found, whether in the U.S. or in Palestine or anywhere else. I also hope we can all work together to oppose the selfishness and greed underlying our government and the multi-national corporations that run our world in these times.

Blessings on your work!

A.N.S.W.E.R. is the acronym for Act Now to Stop War and End Racism. Natalie Finch learned of through the A.N.S.W.E.R. mailing. She writes to us "for my child, Ruby."

As I wipe away tears after reading your article - sent by ANSWER - I want to tell you that I thank God for your strength and your leadership in the struggle for social justice. I am raising my beautiful daughter to carry the mantle of the struggle. I am teaching her to stand up and fight, to keep standing up and keep on fighting. She is carrying on - she does things to help her classmates and others at school. When she sees kids being mistreated or mislead, she steps up and corrects the wrong in a gentle way - but in very determined manner. I teach her by my example - although I am much more "in your face" about it.

I thank God that you, her sisters and brothers, allow me to show her the love and fortitude and righteousness that is at the heart of the struggle for justice and peace among African American people - historically and right now, right up front, leading the cause. I can only hope to someday earn the right to call you my sisters and brothers, as we meet out there, in the streets. I follow in your footsteps and I feel deeply honored to follow your lead.

Praying for, pleading for, demanding justice and peace.

Mrs. Judith McConnell Stevens writes from a feminist perspective.

They want us all to die... black, yellow, brown, and white for their profit. The black activism is one that we all share. Your battle is ours. We women are more than 50% of the population yet have very little power or money. Every minority woman is worse off than her male counterpart around the world. Slavery and sexual mutilation exists for women in many countries. This is unthinkable in the 21st. Century. With the Bush administration, we will go backwards instead of forward to a more peaceful, just world.

An African American duet treated the Washington crowd to moving song. We managed to misspell their names. Luckily, Luci Murphy sent us a corrective letter.

Thank you for the kind words about the singing of "Mother's Day." Yes, Pam Parker and I sang it, but we didn't write it. Peter Jones wrote it at my request.

Here, again, is the refrain from "Mother's Day."

You take our money
You think I don't see
You use it to fire
On women like me

U.S. out of step with globe

noted the worldwide acclaim won by Illinois Governor George Ryan, who commuted the sentences of 167 death row inmates. ("World welcomes death commutations.") Hazel Brown Rockeymoore joined in praise of the outgoing Republican's action.

First I would like to thank you for such a wonderful e-magazine. I mean it is wonder.... ful! The thought-provoking, insightful and deep articles mean so much to us as Black Americans. Your site should be "must" reading for all Americans - of all races.

Gov. Ryan did a courageous and magnificent thing when he commuted those death sentences. He transcended political parties when he did that. My question is, "where were the responses from our Civil Rights organizations? Where was the response from Mfume, Julian, Jessie and the Congressional Black Caucus??? Political parties should not have mattered in this instance. Right is right and wrong is wrong. God tells us in the Book of Deuteronomy that, "My thoughts are not your thoughts and my ways are not your ways." I feel that God was directing the Governor of Illinois in this instance. May God bless Governor Ryan!

Keep us the good work. May God bless and keep you - the Publishers of the Black Commentator.

Letters like Ms. Rockeymoore's make us happy and energetic. So, we sent her links to statements by NAACP Chairman Julian Bond and Rev. Jesse Jackson, both of whom applauded Gov. Ryan.

Censoring young Black minds

In our January 23 RE-PRINT, "Institutional Racism and the Censorship of Kohl Fallin," Alabama writer and professor Wythe Holt recounted the story of Kohl Fallin, a high school student who was censored when she complained, poetically, about her white classmates' use of racial epithets. "Mediocre and below is what we are supposed to amount to in your mind," Fallin wrote. "When I hear these words come out of your mouth it makes me want to slap the white off you and leave you with some sense."

Professor Holt pointed out that Black school officials participated in the censoring of Kohl Fallin's poem. "High-placed black adults go right along with this sort of racism, even facilitate it, probably to save their jobs and to appease an aroused white-dominated power structure," said Holt. He continued:

Censorship sets a terrible model for training young Americans to be open with their feelings, to express themselves, to think and act for themselves, to be active citizens in a free democracy. Yet racist censorship was visited upon Kohl Fallin by her high school authorities, and it has not been corrected despite her strenuous efforts and those of her parents and other allies. Racism is with us still."

Holt's commentary found its way to a teacher named Jasmine, who says she is personally familiar with Kohl Fallin. Her letter is directed to Professor Holt.

I found your comments to be very enlightening as to the response to Kohl Fallin's poem. You brought such light to it that I had not gleaned before. I was looking only at the word "slapping" - a word that to me spelled inciting a riot. However, your interpretation of the slap was much deeper than my original interpretation. Thank you so much for your comments and for interpretation. I taught Kohl in the 5th grade at which time we did a great deal of personal writings. Subjects that students could chose for themselves - nature, family, relationships, pets, etc. - was the usual fare for the majority.

Kohl in her maturity has chosen subjects closer to her heart for today's society. I take my hat off to Kohl for her fearlessness, directness, and reality thinking in her current writings. I'm sorry that in this point in time young people are still burdened with the pathos of racial prejudice. Why must this always be a source of pain for our young people after all the wars, deaths, destruction, and inferior feelings and attitudes that many of our youth must carry on their shoulders? It is also a shame that there are adults in administrative positions who allow this division to manifest itself. I'm sorry Kohl, that you had to write such a poem. Perhaps one day, this world will see how Christ wants us to live and you can go back to writing beautiful poetry about love of family, relationships, and nature.

"Excruciatingly insightful"

We had to put this in bold type, 'cause it feels so good. Our thanks to Betty Baye, columnist for the Courier-Journal in Louisville, Kentucky, who puts good words to even better use.

Don't know how I haven't been tuned into you previously, but my sister, I believe, turned me on and already I'm hooked. As a columnist and editorial writer for a daily newspaper, the commentaries I've read thus far are well-written, excruciatingly insightful and in some cases, as funny as hell. Even when we're being serious, our folk can be funny. Thanks. I'm going to love my subscription.

We are also in debt to Ms. Baye's sister, a woman of vast intellect and refined taste.

An anonymous benefactor performed a similar service for Freddie Wilson.

I was referred by a good white friend of mine to visit your website. I am very pleased as a black man that he did. Our issues regarding society are plagued by our history. However, we will be lucky only because of pure ignorance that at the end, we will all die still being segregated. What a shame it will be to leave the earth with no real understanding as to how to live in harmony.

Tendai Johnson is an educator in Baltimore. We are delighted that he has put us to work.

I am truly appreciative of your commentary and analyses. I have emailed this particular paper to friends and plan to use this article for a discussion in a class I teach at Morgan State University. I will be sharing your address with my students so that they too may benefit directly from your wonderful paper.

Thank you for being.

Mr. Johnson teaches "Introduction to the African Diaspora" for the History Department at Morgan, and is Director of the Office of Institutional Research at nearby Coppin State University.

Alice Copeland informs us that she is known as "The Dissident."

For the bravery of the Black Caucus who walked out on this illegitimate president, I give thanks. For the bravery of Cynthia McKinney who, like me, sometimes over-reaches in her oratory, I give thanks. I hope she will not be disheartened by her treatment by Georgia voters. The saddest thing of all, is that black people are disproportionately represented in our cannon fodder, doomed to die for a greedy hypocritical, killer administration. Bush kills 250 Texans through capital punishment, they each have killed maybe one; he gets the presidency, they get death. How? Why? No sense, and our populace is getting even dumber. You are one of the shining stars.

Larry Piltz also rates a cut above the norm.

The perspective I get from your articles is remarkably refreshing and deeply stirring. It's also vitally freeing to read the actual bottom line, unadulterated, unapologetic truth and reality that come from your writers and contributors. I've read a lot of other sites and publications for many years now, and yours is the absolute only one that starts at the heart of the matter, stays in the heart of the matter, and finishes there too. Other sites, of course, also have good perspectives but yield much too quickly and easily to the temptation to become hip and clever and thereby become too lightweight and smarmy to be taken seriously for long. I doubt that would ever happen at Black Commentator.

Dr. Jeffrey Levine writes: "The Black Commentator is Class Commentary."

I just wanted to take a moment to commend you on your excellent commentary and journalism. Black Commentator pieces are beginning to appear on many liberal/left-wing listservs. Keep up the good work people!

Sue Dennis:

You have done it again! Your comments are concise, insightful and clearly presented. John Stanton's guest article re: Bush's Ugly America was chillingly clear, thus frightening. After reading the Condoleezza Rice editorial, the combined effect was startling, to put it mildly.

Thank you, again, for a good read.

Katherine Dillon:

Thank you for The Black Commentator! I will suggest it to my friends. At this very troubled time in global history, we need these voices more than ever.

Yoni Reinberg, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania:

I have to say, has done it again; On the top of my required reading on the web, not only does it rally leftwards like other great progressive mags but it does so with style, from the colors on your website to the perfect quotes and words you use.

Please keep up the good work!

"Rally Left!" What an energetic image.

Because of the heavy volume of mail, we've saved some letters for publication, next week.

Keep writing.

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