Category Archives: Politics

Fair Housing for All?

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I attended a panel examining Fair Housing in Atlanta 50+ years after the passage of the Civil Right Act.

Well, it was meant to be a panel examining the growth or lack there of fair, i.e. affordable, housing in the City of Atlanta. As someone who has a very shaky grasp of the history and current situation of housing availability in Atlanta, I couldn’t say that I walked away with much more information than what I began. Words spoken by the panelists acknowledged historical discrimination and current housing injustice, but specific details explaining these words were not given. Instead the panelists quickly moved on to describe how much the institutions they worked for were working hard to address the problem. The panelists included a representative for HUD, the Housing Authority (or soon to be Atlanta Housing, a good marketing move) and two others I cannot remember now.

But the evening wasn’t a waste because it did whet my appetite about learning more about housing in Atlanta. Embarrassingly enough, for several questions that were raised in my mind, I quickly wondered what Thomas Sowell, or Colin (of Colin’s Last Stand) thought. I wanted to be told the answer. But that would be too easy and just a tad pathetic since I knew that once I had their answer I would just parrot what they had to say.

So, I want to actually understand, not just repeat someone else’s conclusions.

Here are the handful of questions that I think are most important to me to begin with:

What is the Fair Housing Act and what part of the Civil Rights Act addresses housing (yes, Dr King hang your head in shame because I honestly don’t know – yet.)

What are the average prices of homes and apartments in City of Atlanta and why are they so expensive?

What happens to those who are displaced by gentrification?

Is it automatically discriminatory for landlords not to choose to accept housing vouchers? why do landlords choose not to accept housing vouchers?

Is an enforced fair housing law effective? (define effective. ūüėČ

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Questioning: Pan Africanism, Black Collectivism

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In the past year, my political views have bent toward a more libertarian angle and have thus found a need to question a lot of my previous beliefs.

Currently on the chopping block: pan Africanism, black collectivism.

Pan Africanism – can I admit that I didn’t even consider it a political movement or political theory, it was just the way that people should think – Blacks -worldwide- should be sticking together. Ergo, the fact that this is NOT the reality is cause for a lot of alarm, shame and embarrassment.

But stepping back, gaining a different perspective, I am now able to ask some questions, most pertinent to me is what is the overall goal, what exactly is this global collective suppose to be striving for?

The same questions apply to Black collectivism. One of the most blatant answers I see is that this banding together is meant for protection, against white supremacy, Asian supremacy, Jewish supremacy, etc. Somehow this banding together will produce…some type of paradise on Earth. SOMEHOW. Yeah, that’s about the extent of the general knowledge I have obtained of these movements. Considering that these are movements meant for everyone of a certain skin color I don’t think that these answers should appear so esoteric.

so I’m going to have to dig deeper.

Let’s see what I come up with.

Shea moisture: When ‘buying black’ goes wrong

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Hey, how about that Shea Moisture commercial that is bound to become a teachable moment in how NOT to properly court a new consumer market without angering your old market.

A lot of the anger is coming from a contingent of consumers who believe in the black centric principle of buying black.

Here’s four teachable lessons for consumers who want to practice the principle of buying black without being burned in the future.

 

  1. “Buying Black ensures that more Black people are employed,” is one of the reasons stated for why it’s important to support Black businesses.
    1. BUYER BEWARE: Do your homework and research the company’s hiring practices.
  2. Black owners may not share your values. (I.E. Blacks are REALLY not a monolith)
    1. BUYER BEWARE: You, dear consumer, may believe in black empowerment, collectivism, etc, but that does not mean that the business owner you are purchasing from believes in reinvestment in the community, hiring more people from the community, etc. As a “woke” consumer, it is your duty to do due diligence to discover where your dollars are likely to be used.

How one breakthrough candidate dampened my excitement for the next

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The quickest of the quickest background needed for this piece Р1. I am a life long Democrat voter and 2. I voted for President -soon to be former РPresident Obama twice.

I still remember the Election Day from that year. The day just carried an excitement, I remember hearing people honking in the streets as they – as we waited for the tally to come in to confirm what so many people expected, hoped for – America had elected its first Black president.

The next election, 2012, was a decidedly less exciting affair. I don’t remember the day, the excitement. I do remember voting – this time I did early voting. The lines were long, but ¬†the weather was pleasant. The only celebrity I met in person was Mario Van Peebles who stopped by to “encourage” the voters to stay in the voting line and actually vote I suppose.

The novelty of the first African American president(technically he is mixed, but I feel confident his race will be recorded as African American) had been greatly lowered. These people elected to their jobs were, well, expected to do their jobs. I was increasingly aggravated by the slow process that change that Obama administration had promised.

And to be more honest, I didn’t even remember what I wanted the Obama administration to accomplish. I just got caught up in the day to day fights of Democrats vs Republicans, but I had no overarching¬†dreams/goals for the administration to accomplish. Wow, that’s sad to say, but when I announce myself as a life long Democrat, essentially I am saying that I took my marching orders as far as the most important issues from the Democratic party. Abortion, gun rights, social issues – I had an opinion about these issues because they were the issues being talked about.

Enter Madame Hilary Clinton. The supposed first female president ¬†of the United States. And I didn’t care. ¬†I knew the Hillary Clinton name from years of public use, she was a woman, I do believe women are capable of handling leadership roles. But her gender didn’t matter to me. I had learned from watching President Obama.

Skin color and sex didn’t matter. It comes down to whether she could do the job.

And I didn’t know if she could. Moreover, I didn’t trust her to do the job.

So I didn’t vote for her. I didn’t vote for Trump. For the first time, in my voting life, I didn’t vote at all. I felt embarrassed not to be able to say that I voted for someone.But I didn’t believe the other candidates had a chance and I don’t believe in a protest vote.