X-Clan Member Encourages All to Boycott 9-11 Movie

dbanner1newparis

BOYCOTT THIS MOVIE!!! EMAIL THIS TO YOUR ENTIRE LIST:

It’s so natural for hollywood to assume that every Hero is a White man.

by DJ Paradise Gray

original movie-August 16 2006

Hollywood has always changed facts and edited history. From Charlton Heston
as Moses and Elizabeth Taylor as Cleopatra. They are only continuing their
tradition of White-washing our history. If they were able to portray Imhotep
(The Mummy and The Mummy Returns who was one of the greatest black Heroes of
all times and Jesus Christ as white without a single peep from our
community, why should this even matter to them in the least?

Situations like this will continue and we as Black people (or whatever you
want to consider yourself) will deserve what we get, unless we are willing
to stand up against tyranny and white supremacy.

Demand that this movie be taken out of theatures. Boycott this movie like
they attempted to boycott “Barbershop” show some community outrage like they
did for the poster of 50’s Get Rich Or Die trying. Cause the national media
to pick up this story.

Do something for a change. (Yes I’m talking to you!).

Paradise Gray
http://www.myspace.com/paradisegray
(Please forward to everyone on your email list, as the national press has
not or will not pick up this story)

Full story in The New Pittsburgh Courier
http://newpittsburghcourieronline.com/articlelive/articles/35730/1/World-Trade-Center-omits-Black-soldier/WTC-movies-unsung-hero.html

‘World Trade Center’ omits Black Soldier

Following disasters of historically epic proportions like the attack on the
World Trade Center, there are bound to be countless tales of self-sacrifice,
heroism and triumph. Some stories, like those told in the movies Flight 93
and Oliver Stone’s World Trade Center, premiering Aug. 9, are made into
blockbusters for the world to see. Others are either whispered quietly among
family and friends or confined to the memories and souls of those who refuse
to speak of them.

Such is the tale of United States Marine Corps Sgt. Jason L. Thomas–in
spite of the fact that his story and the one told in World Trade Center are
one in the same.

THE STORY

The morning of Sept. 11, 2001 began like any other for Jason L. Thomas. A
student at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice of City University of
New York, he heard about the attack after taking his daughter to his
mother’s house in Queens so he could attend classes.

At the time I was saying to myself, That’s an attack. My mother looked at it
as if it was an accident, but one of the first things that came to my mind
was, They got us, he said.

Immediately after that, I just got in high gear. I had my uniform in my car,
my C-Bag. We just moved into a house, so I had a lot of my personal
equipment in my vehicle. I ran out to my car, got my uniform, got dressed
and shot to the city.

After a delay in Queens, which Thomas credits for keeping him away from the
collapse of the South Tower, he attached himself to a police convoy and made
it to the site within moments of the fall of the North Tower.

Approaching one of the towers, all I see is one at the time, I see the
building come crashing down. It just comes straight down. I park my vehicle
and I remember this cloud of smoke and ash just enveloped where I was. I
stuck my head down in my shirt and scooted behind my car and got on my
knees, but it engulfed the area. So I got up and I just ran in the direction
towards Ground Zero.

At Ground Zero, Thomas immediately began to help by fighting fires,
establishing triage sites to help the injured and assisting with the overall
evacuation. While his primary focus was devoted to the emergency, he
couldn’t help being affected by what had become of his city.

I know this beautiful city, and now here it is, it’s just rubble,  he said.
There are fire engines on fire, and you don’t see that everyday–you don’t
see cars and ambulances on fire. I was just trying to take it in.

After hours of firefighting, assisting survivors and in some cases, praying
over the dead, Thomas ran into another marine, Staff Sgt. Dave Karnes.
Thomas presented a plan for a search and rescue mission of the area and he
and Karnes tried to enlist other soldiers on site to help. When they were
told the mission was too dangerous, they decided to go by themselves.

I found a couple guys, but it wasn’t enough, to them, to start a search and
rescue, he said. I remember myself and staff Sgt. Karnes saying, We’re going
to start the search and rescue with or without you, because someone needs
us.

THE MOVIE

The World Trade Center movie tells the story of the rescues of New York Port
Authority police officers John McLoughlin and Will Jimeno from Ground Zero,
as well as that of the men who rescued them. In real life, the officers were
rescued by sergeants Karnes and Thomas. In the film, however, they were
rescued by Karnes and PFC Dave Thomas; a composite character, played by
William Mapother, a white actor, who is meant to represent Thomas.

World Trade Center producer Michael Shamberg said that they knew about Sgt.
Thomas’s role in the rescue, but were unable to find him when creating the
film. He said producers didn’t discover Thomas was a Black man until after
they had started the movie. He also said that in spite of the fact that the
film was co-written by McLoughlin and Jimeno was consulted for authenticity,
no one ever asked them for a physical description of the man who helped save
their lives.

Frankly, we goofed–we learned when we were filming that he was an
African-American, said Shamberg.  We would change it if we could. I actually
called him and apologized, and he said he didn’t mind. He was very gracious
about it.

Shamberg also apologized for another African-American officer, Bruce
Reynolds, who was also portrayed as white in the movie.

Thomas, meanwhile, didn’t learn the film was about his story until he saw
the unmistakable image of two marines peering into a whole at Ground Zero
during a commercial for the movie. He said that while he wasn’t angry about
how the film turned out, he does wish it could have been more realistic.

Full story in The New Pittsburgh Courier
http://newpittsburghcourieronline.com/articlelive/articles/35730/1/World-Trade-Center-omits-Black-soldier/WTC-movies-unsung-hero.html

———————————————————————————————–
Paradise Gray
Honorary Chairman, Pittsburgh LOC
National Political Hip-hop Convention
Grand Arkitech Of The BlackWatch Movement
Minister Of Arts And Sciences Millions More Movement
Director Of Almost Home Youth Ministries
One Hood
Http://www.myspace.com/paradisegray

Return to Davey D’s Hip Hop Corner

Turning Outrage Into Power-National Hip Hop Political Convention

National Hip Hop Political Convention-nhhpc

Turning Outrage Into Power
By Malik Cooper, WireTap

Alternet — August 16, 2006

www.alternet.org/story/40441/

Saying hip-hop is global now isn’t telling you
something you don’t already know, unless you have been
living under a rock since Planet Rock first dropped.
But using the art form for political gains is something
new, and spearheading this movement is the National Hip
Hop Political Convention (NHHPC).

The 2006 NHHPC in Chicago — the second biennial
convention — opened on July 20 and over the course of
three days engaged over 1,000 participants in the
debates over issues like misogyny in hip-hop, media
justice, the aftermath of Katrina, grassroots activism,
organizational leadership and electoral politics. The
convention closed with a concert on Saturday featuring
Dead Prez, Chicago Poets and Boots Riley among many
other artists.

NHHPC was founded in late 2002 when some elders pulled
organizers from all over the country for the first
national convention in New Jersey that aimed at
creating a political agenda for the hip-hop community.
I first got involved at this time, as we worked at
finding the issues of our community. Born and raised in
California’s Bay Area, I had been speaking publicly
since a young age, but became really active when I
finished filming MTV’s Real World series. After the
show I traveled as a motivational speaker to colleges
and got involved with youth organizations committed to
the fight against Big Tobacco. Through a good friend I
got invited to the Bay Area’s Local Organizing
Committee (Bay-LOC) meeting, and began to get involved
in hip-hop politics.

Like other local organizers around the country, we went
around our community with issue sheets for people to
fill out, which we used to create a state agenda.
During the state convention individuals from over 30
states and Puerto Rico came together and created a
national agenda. By February 2005, a group of different
LOC members had a retreat in Atlanta and formed a
national body with a steering committee whose goals
were to help bring local groups together and facilitate
any national work that needed to be done.

After Bay-LOC returned to California, we began to
organize a local Hip Hop Summit at Laney College in
Oakland in September 2005. One day of workshops and a
concert, which included performances from Dead Prez and
E40, attracted thousands. We had support and speeches
from Rep. Barbara Lee and Bay-LOC’s own Dereca
Blackman, and handed out voter guides, which we rewrote
in new language that identified with the hip-hop
generation.

Around the same time, the Chicago-LOC began working as
a host committee for the next convention. It was up to
them to handle the event program, and the event’s
success can only be attributed to their hard work.

The convention itself started with a dialogue between
organizers of past movements like Civil Rights and
Black Power, including Fred Hampton Jr. (Prisoners Of
Conscience Committee), Cliff Kelley (WVON Radio Host),
Angela Woodson (Federation of Democratic Women), and
writer and activist Amina Norman-Hawkins. Organizers
both young and old felt this was needed, since many
believed the torch was never passed on to the new
generation.

Hip-hop politics today — as I see it — identifies
strongly with the Black Power movement; the lyrics in
conscious rap resonate with ideals of Malcolm X and
self-determination. The Bay Area especially identifies
with the Black Panthers since its roots are found here.
But all over the globe — and even in early days of
hip- hop, when most music came from New York — lyrics
focus on the social ills and mistreatment of people of
color in this country. The same “@#%$ the system”
attitude gave birth to gangsta rap. And although the
majority of it now focuses on the material and the
misogynistic, early pioneers of the art form told the
world what was going on or was absent in their
neighborhoods. In other countries like Brazil,
Venezuela, Cuba — today more than ever — hip-hop
serves this same purpose.

Not everyone at the convention represented a LOC, and
with the alliance building that had been taking place
since the NHHPC’s inception, I saw other hip-hop groups
like the Hip Hop Congress represented there in full
force, leading workshops and hosting the concert piece.
The League of Young Voters had a huge presence, and not
only helped raise money for the convention but also
taught workshops on branding the hip-hop political
movement, lobbying, base building and electoral
politics.

The first day’s workshops seemed geared at creating
better methods of organizing the organizers. Panels and
workshops focused on alliance building, using art for
activism, political prisoners, organizing against war
and occupation, hip-hop and gender politics,
nonviolence strategies, and the use of electoral
politics.

On that Friday afternoon, a jam-packed room of folks
from all over the country listened to Kali Acunu
(Jericho Amnesty Movement), Troy Nkrumah, (chair of the
NHHPC steering committee), and chairman Fred Hampton
Jr. (Prisoners Of Conscience Committee) talk about the
many political prisoners that are currently
incarcerated. Harman Bell, Kamau Sadiki, Zolo Azania
Ojora Lutalo, Rodney Coronado, and Veronza Bowers were
a few of the names mentioned. Rapper Immortal Technique
event came in and voiced his support on the issue, and
it definitely was one of the most informative panels.

Saturday, July 21, seemed to begin with many issue-
based workshops and panels on education, criminal
justice, health and wellness, Katrina, immigration,
gender rights, white privilege in hip-hop, and media
justice. The media justice panel included Lisa Fager
(Industry Ears) and Davey D (Hardknock Radio/Breakdown
FM), who talked about a variety of subjects like the
media’s control over hip-hop and net neutrality. The
immigration and gender rights were two new issues added
to the 2006 agenda. I led the panel on gender rights,
whose purpose was to expose some of the misogynistic
rap lyrics in a social context, allowing participants
to better understand why the popular rap pushed by
record executives and radio stations seem so focused on
portraying negative images.

After the panels were over, a concert was thrown with a
battle between local folks. Using all the elements of
hip-hop, from rapping, break dancing, DJ-ing and
graffiti, crews took to the stage to compete for a
$1,000 prize. Afterward, local conscious artists like
Akbar, and national artists like Dead Prez and Immortal
Technique gave amazing performances. Even Chicago’s
rain and thunder could not clear the crowd formed at
Mandrake Park.

Sunday was a day for the national steering committee to
hear the voices of participants. Delegates representing
different LOCs, artists and organizers for different
groups were allowed to change the agenda and recommend
action steps that the LOCs can take home and start
implementing. The location for the next convention will
be announced soon. Will it be back East in New York,
down South in Atlanta, out West in the Bay Area, or
will newly formed but highly active Las Vegas LOC take
the 2008 to its Red State? We shall have to wait and
see.

The organization as a whole has a talent at balancing
the varied political views of its members, some of
which seek to fight for social justice through
electoral politics, while others seemed more determined
to fight through grassroots activism. The way these
varied ideologies have still found a way to work
together for a common goal is why the NHHPC is still
going and growing strong. The structure with no leader
but still led strong through the local organizing
committee gives this organization a type of strength
that I have not seen in many other organizations that
function more top-down. I believe this unique model
will help keep their work relevant, and the
organization intact.

===
For more information about the NHHPC, or to learn how
to start a LOC (Local Organizing Committee) in your
area, go to HipHopConvention.org.

[Malik Cooper is the national spokesperson for the
NHHPC, as well as a Bay-LOC member. He also owns a
silk- screening and embroidery shop called People’s
Choice Printing.]

Return To Davey D’s Hip Hop Corner

BET’s Cousin Jeff Speaks Out Against Democrats

Cousin Jeff aka Jeff Johnson’s Statement:

cousin jeff JohnsonAug 16 2006: Over the past few days I have been run through the blog and email world as a traitor, an undercover operative, a money chaser, a republican sellout, and many other things. I have been talked about and attacked by people that I have considered colleagues, and in some cases friends, without a phone call or email to inquire about my decision. I have had professional contracts cancelled and future contract negotiations halted all as a result of my announcement Friday August 11, 2006 to officially support the campaign of J. Kenneth Blackwell for Governor of the state of Ohio.

However, I am not angry, bitter, resentful, or moved to retaliate. In fact I understand my brothers and sisters who question my decision, are angered by my decision, and even feel betrayed. Many of you out there think that I have lost my mind; some think that I have sold out, and others think I am chasing money.

This letter comes as my opportunity to tell the people whom I work for (my community) and work with my reasons for making such a difficult intellectual, emotional, and spiritual decision.

First and foremost I am not nor do I have plans to become a member of or work for the Republican Party. When the press release announcing my support speaks to ‘working for the campaign’ it means that I will be on the road speaking about the issues that I believe in and the need for urban and young people to come out and vote. Finally I AM NOT AN EMPLOYEE OF THE CAMPAIGN OR RECIEVEING COMPENSATION PERSONALLY OR THROUGH MY COMPANY FOR MY ENDORSEMENT. I have asked the Campaign to cover Health Insurance coverage costs that I have lost as a result of my endorsement of Blackwell and the campaign has agreed. My first priority is to make sure my children are protected, HOWEVER, the work that I do has never been about chasing the dollars and it never will be.

Beyond that, it is impossible to assess my decision without looking at the historical and current implications of the black political universe in America. Reconstruction thrust former African slaves into a period of being players in the political games of the US as opposed to simply being political pawns used by one side or the other. It was the party of Lincoln, the Republican Party, that former slaves embraced feeling that the party was dedicated to advancing their social and political best interest. Not until the early days of the Civil Rights movement did it become apparent that the Democrats were more interested in pushing for the legislative changes at the legal, state, and federal level that would provide blacks with a better quality of life than the Republicans. And so we shifted our party loyalty from the Republicans to the Democrats.

What made our shift to the Democratic Party so different from our time with the Republicans was that we now had institutions like the NAACP, SCLC, and others that were responsible for making and maintaining our political alliances. During the Civil Rights Movement these organizations and their leadership were responsible for ensuring that those alliances translated into social and political change. And they did. The passage of both the Civil and Voting Rights Acts were in part due to the political alliances made by those like Roy Wilkins and others working in connection with grassroots activists. However, after the death of the Kennedy and King we saw yet another shift.

That post-civil rights shift brings us in many cases to where we currently exist: the era of the professional activist. The post civil rights leadership provided by many we know and some we don’t know has been both incredibly effective in some areas and simultaneously negligent in others. We have seen great gains by many people of color as a result of much of their work. However, many of our leaders and organizations are now supporting these same alliances without the manifestation of social or policy changes for our community.

It must be said that the black community of 2006 is no longer the monolithic community it was 40 years ago. With that there are multiple agendas that exists within the black community, other communities of color, and poor communities. Some of these agendas overlap and some are in direct opposition to each other. Unfortunately in many cases there is no agenda at all and we find ourselves forced to acquiesce to the pre-packaged agenda of the Republican or Democratic parties that in both cases leaves many of our agenda items on the floor (if they ever made it in the room).

We are now faced with a political climate where we are forced to choose one party or the other instead of candidate-by-candidate assessment based on our own agenda. We therefore demonize each other based on party affiliation, chastising democrats that support republicans and vice versa instead of challenging both parties to better represent our agenda and in turn earn our vote. This practice of blindly supporting candidates that do not have an agenda for our community is the paramount reason for my decision.

I believe that there is as much demagoguery and scare tactic rhetoric on the left as there is on the right. As I look at the issue of voter disenfranchisement, I was on the ground mobilizing people in OH in 2000 with the NAACP and in 2004 with the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network. I was present during the finger pointing and name-calling following the election, and I watched as the congress failed to follow the lead of Stephanie Tubbs Jones to get to the bottom of the situation. I questioned some of the pre election tactics and post election posturing of the Republican Party regarding the issue. However, it is important to note that in at least two of the counties where the most complaints of long lines and too few voting machines were reported there were Democrats at the head of the county election process. It was their responsibility to determine how many machines were to be placed at each location, not that of the Secretary of State. In essence both parties are complicit in not doing everything possible before and after the elections to ensure that every voter has full access to the polls and that their vote is counted. Party agendas have taken precedent over people’s access.

Secondly, after looking at both campaigns I do not see an agenda for my community in the Strickland plan. I hear rhetoric about public education, with no strategy to get there. I do not see the few blacks within the campaign being empowered to do what is necessary to engage the community with substance. He has yet to provide support to either of Ohio’s HBCUs even by visiting the campus. I also see Strickland doing black community drive-bys as opposed to meeting one on one with key leaders in the major cities of OH to share his agenda for us.

It must be said that I DO NOT agree with Blackwell on all issues. I am pro-choice and believe in a woman’s right to choose and strongly disagree on any move to take that away. I also do not believe that vouchers will save public schools, merely help a few get out of bad situations. I do however support Blackwell’s move to propose a clear education reform plan to see an increase in classroom spending for public schools. It is reform of this and other types that will push us to repair schools that are bankrupt. I also support Blackwell’s plans for job creation and economic development. He has had the best record of any state official in OH providing state contracts to black owned firms spending over 35% of available resources with minority firms. Finally, he has served on the Board of Wilberforce University for 10 years and continues to support the institution through his presence and resources, moving the President of the University and former congressman Floyd Flake to serve as the co-chair of his campaign (unpaid).

I must again reiterate that I will no longer support those who do not feel a small obligation to support me through their agenda. I would rather know what I am not getting with Blackwell, than have no idea of what I am getting with Strickland. There are many organizations on the left that would tell blacks that Blackwell is bad for them, when those organizations have no black agenda or staff at the highest and lowest levels to carry it out. We must become independent thinkers and not allow others to demonize others as if they are for us.

I am claiming my independence.

It is for that reason that I can endorse not only Ken Blackwell in Ohio, but also Kweisi Mfume in Maryland. While Mfume is running against a popular black republican (if he moves on from the primary), I believe that Mfume will better carry our agenda. As a former congressman and President of the NAACP, he has proven his commitment to our community. I am excited about his campaign and will work as hard to see him win in Maryland as I will work in Ohio for the candidate I believe, at the end of the day, will carry MORE of our water.

As a community, regardless of what demographic of the community you are a part of, I urge you to think independently. If your convictions lead you to disagree, then so be it. Just don’t allow yourself to be plugged into the political matrix moving by a partisan remote control.

In a song titled ‘My Petition’ from her project Beautifully Human, the prolific poetess, Jill Scott writes

‘You say you the know the way to go, and I should follow, but all of your empty promises leave me hollow’

Oh how do I trust you? How do I love you when you lie to me repeatedly and Oh How do I have faith in you when you just don’t come through like you said you would

While it is said she applicably wrote this to George Bush, it could easily be asked to the Democratic Party as well. I would ask that we challenge both as vigorously as we can.

While many of you reading this may still think I am off base, I ask that you would be critical of my decision, but not my character. Challenge my logic, but not my integrity. For while you may disagree with my ideology and more so my methods, I am doing what I believe is best for the people and communities that I have given over ten years of my life to. I simply believe that it is time for us to change the game.

Your Brother,

Jeff

Below is the initial press release from Ken Blackwell who is accused of handing Bush the election via Voter Fraud practices…

From the Ohio Republican Party’s Website: http://www.ohiogop.org/News/Read.aspx?ID=1215

BET Host and Former NAACP Official Joins Blackwell Team

Friday, August 11, 2006

Gubernatorial candidate Ken Blackwell today announced Black Entertainment Television (BET) host and former NAACP national youth director Jeff Johnson has joined his campaign team. Johnson will serve as the campaign’s advocate to young and urban voters.

”Jeff Johnson is one of the most influential leaders of his generation,” said Blackwell. ”I am proud he has joined my campaign team as we embark on this historic endeavor.”

”Ken Blackwell represents the very best that Ohio has to offer in this year’s gubernatorial race,” said Johnson. ”My feelings reflect the position of many within Ohio’s African American community who believe that Mr. Blackwell has a clearer vision for Ohio’s diverse Black community. I will carry the message that it is time to challenge the antiquated political alliances which have failed to include young and urban voters in their policy agenda.”

Johnson is considered the voice of a new generation of leadership. He engages viewers on issues ranging from violence to voting on BET’s ”Rap City” on Wednesdays from 5 to 6 p.m.

In addition, Johnson is the CEO of Truth Is Power, a lifestyle consulting firm in Washington D.C., and formerly served as the youth pastor at the Empowerment Temple AME Church in Baltimore, Md.

From 2000 to 2003, Johnson served as the national director of the NAACP Youth and College Division. He was responsible for more than 700 Youth Units representing over 60,000 young people.

Raised in Cleveland, Johnson attended the University of Toledo where he was the first person of color to serve as student government president.