port of harlem magazine

September 6 - September 19, 2012


The End of WASP Rule?

modern americaSince its founding, the country has been run by WASPs (White Anglo-Saxon Protestants). That era appears to be over now. Neither the Democratic nor the Republican ticket has any WASPs on it. While Obama is a Protestant, he isn't (fully) White and Joe Biden is a Catholic. On the Republican side, Romney is a Mormon and Ryan is a Catholic.

Neither of the leaders of Congress are WASPS. Speaker John Boehner is a Catholic and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is a Mormon. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi is a Catholic although Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is a Baptist (who are Protestant).

The Supreme Court is a complete shutout for the WASPs. The current Court consists of six Catholics and three Jews. For the first time in history, there are no Protestants at all on the Court.

Thus of the top 17 positions (four national candidates, four leaders in Congress and nine Supreme Court Justices) the only WASP is Mitch McConnell. Four of the 17 are women. This is an astounding change in a fairly short time. Back in the 1950s, something like this would have been unthinkable.

we want our country backOne cannot but wonder if a lot of the hatred and partisanship in politics (e.g., the appearance of the Tea Party out of nowhere) is a manifestation that the guard is changing and the people who used to run the show don't any more. Some of them may not be taking the end of their monopoly graciously.

From an Earlier SnippetDavid Duke: Will the White Race Survive?

Duke is a former Grand Wizard of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, an American activist and writer and former Republican Louisiana State Representative.

port of harlem gambian education partnership

Mo’Nique Cuts
Marriage-Equality Video

Mo'NiqueBaltimore, Maryland native Monique Angela Hicks, known professionally as Mo'Nique, has released a video supporting marriage equality as her home state gears up for a vote on the issue.  Mo’Nique is best known as costar of the hit TV series The Parkers and the award winning movie Precious.  

Earlier in her career, the actress and comedian turned heads when she told the New York Times upon entering her third marriage, “We have an agreement that we'll always be honest, and if sex happens with another person, that's not a deal breaker for us, that's not something where we'll have to say, 'Oh God, we've got to go to divorce court because you cheated on me.'  Because we don't cheat.”

Michael Jackson's Kids
Visit Gary

mj's kidsMichael Jackson's three children Prince, Paris and Blanket were in their father’s hometown to throw out ceremonial first pitches and witness the Gary RailCats defeat the St. Paul Saints, Thursday, August 30, 5 to 4, in a minor league baseball game.

Along with their grandmother, Aunt LaToya and the Rev. Jesse Jackson, they also visited MJ’s boyhood home at 2300 Jackson Street (originally named for President Andrew Jackson) in the city’s traditionally Black Midtown neighborhood. As part of the "Goin' Back to Indiana: Can You Feel It" tour, Jackson's kids took part in four days of events commemorating The City Built on Sand’s most famous native and the King of Pop’s 54th birthday.
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Election 2012

American Democracy Still Evolving – With a Fight A Pennsylvania Court judge denied a bid by civil rights groups to block the new voter identification law from taking effect in Pennsylvania.  The Civil Rights groups are appealing the decision.

A federal court has ruled for the first time that a strict photo identification law discriminates against poor and minority voters in violation of the Voting Rights Act, barring Texas from enforcing its new requirement at polling places this fall.

A federal court in Ohio ruled that a change in the state's early voting procedures, which closed polls to most individuals the weekend prior to Election Day, was "likely" unconstitutional and granted a request from the Obama campaign to put enforcement of the law on hold. The court acknowledged an argument that "low-income and minority voters are disproportionately affected by the changes.”

A whopping 0 percent of Black voters support Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, if you trust the accuracy of a new NBC/WSJ poll.

Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson -- an anti-war candidate who supports marijuana legalization and smaller government garnered 7 percent of the vote in a May poll in New Hampshire, which Obama won easily four years ago but Bush carried in 2000. Earlier this month, Public Policy Polling showed Johnson pulling 7 percent of the vote in Colorado where Obama was the first Democrat since Bill Clinton to win the state. Johnson is also polling at 3 percent in North Carolina, another swing state.

Gallup says that Romney's speech rated lower than any of the eight convention addresses they've tested since Bob Dole's acceptance speech at the 1996 GOP convention. Thirty-eight percent of those questioned in the new Gallup survey said they thought Romney's  acceptance speech was excellent or good. That's down from the 47% who four years ago said McCain's speech was excellent or good and the 58% who said the same thing about Obama's address in 2008.

Liars Caught
Paul Ryan said about Obama: "He created a bipartisan debt commission. They came back with an urgent report. He thanked them, sent them on their way and then did exactly nothing." The Washington Post’s Jonathan Bernstein noted the use of "they." In reality, Ryan was on the commission and successfully convinced the House Republicans to vote it down.  It was Ryan who killed it, not Obama.

Los Angeles Times: "Rick Santorum repeats inaccurate welfare attack on Obama."

New York Times:  “Facts Take a Beating in Acceptance Speeches

Richard Pierpoint Added to West Africans in Early American Exhibit

richard pierpoint

The Port Of Harlem Gambian Education Partnership (POHGEP) has added Richard Pierpoint to its online exhibit on West Africans who helped develop the United States. You can help make greater connections between Americans and Gambians with a contribution of as little as $5.

POHGEP is seeking $400 in contributions by September 30, 2012 to duplicate the entire exhibit, now on display at the Gambia National Library, for additional exhibits at the Juffreh Slavery Museum in Juffreh (home of Kunte Kinteh) and Timbooktu Bookstore in Bakau.

With your contribution, we will place your name on the West Africans in Early America homepage. You can make your contribution via PayPal or you can forward a check or money order to:

3215 W Street, SE
Washington, DC 20020

We stumbled upon Pierpoint while looking for an image to accompany C.R. Gibbs’ article, “The War of 1812: A Black Bicentennial Perspective ,” published in the June 14 - June 27, 2012 Snippets.  With the help of the Canadian War Museum, we learned more about his life and purchased an illustrator’s tribute to him (there are no actual likenesses of Pierpoint).

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Theo Hodge, Jr. M.D.

Things to Do

World Premier Movie
Avalon Theater
5612 Conn Ave, NW
Washington, DC
Thu, Sep 6, 8p-10p, $11.53

On the Cutting Room Floor: The Image of the
Black Woman in
American Film
CR Gibbs
Greenbelt Library
11 Crescent Road
Greenbelt, MD
Tue, Sep 11, 7p, free

1001 Inventions:
The Enduring Legacy of Muslim Civilization

Fri, Sep 14, 7:30p
National Geographic Center
1145 17th Street NW
Washington, D.C., Event-Plus-Exhibit $20

The Sister 6: Great Women Scholars at Howard University
Dr. Ida Jones
Woodridge Library
1801 Hamlin St. N.E.
Washington, DC
Wed, Sep 19, 7p, free

Congressional Black Caucus
Foundation Author Pavilion - free
Congressman John Lewis
"Across That Bridge:
Life Lessons and a Vision for Change"
Thu, Sep 20, 12p-2p

"Chocolate Flava 3"
Thu, Sep 20, 2p-4p

julianne malveaux

Julianne Malveaux
"Surviving and Thriving:
365 Facts in Black
Economic History"
Fri, Sep 21, 1:30p-3p

General Colin Powell
"It Worked for Me: In Life and Leadership"
Fri, Sep 21, 3p-4:30p

Etan Thomas
with an appearance by Lamman Rucker
Rising to the Ultimate Challenge"
Sat, Sep 22, 11a-1p

An evening with Billie Holiday

starring Vanessa Rubin
Publick Playhouse
5445 Landover Road
Cheverly MD
Sat, Sep 22, 8p, $30

Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) Shows Diversity
in Washington

jews against zionism

It was the Muslim’s turn to meet at the Washington Convention Center and to show the diversity among the believers of Islam.  Though a 2008 Gallup Poll revealed that African Americans make up the highest percentage of American Muslims (35%), Middle Eastern culture dominated the event.  One middle eastern diasporan group that stood out was Neturei Karta International (Jews United Against Zionism).  According to the flyers they were distributing, the group “strongly” opposes Zionism and the State of Israel.

Most groups participating in the conference, however, were not political.  One group, Islamic Swag, sold religiously sensitive leisure wear. Other groups participating included the Turkish American Community Center which is planning to build a sprawling complex in predominantly Black Prince Georges County, Maryland.  The U.S. Armed Services recruited new personnel and members of the Global Deaf Muslim organization signed.

video icon On the economic front, Faraz Sattar, founder of Accretive Wealth Management, represented one of several financial firms at the convention that offer investments according to Islamic principles.  He explained that under Islamic principles, investors cannot make money simply off loaning money; therefore, any investment with a “fix interest component” is not permissible. 

However, Islamic principle adherents can invest in stocks as Islamic principles allow the making of money from the profit and loss on a company’s performance.  For instance, companies pay dividends based on the company having made money on the production of goods or the delivery of services.  The companies in which Islamic adherents invest must not produce or deliver certain goods and services such as pornography and alcohol.

The seminars ranged from "Renewable and Sustainable Energy Development" to "Faith as an Asset, Muslims in the Workplace."  Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), one of only two Muslims in the 435 member U.S. House of Representatives, participated in one seminar. Ellison and fellow Muslim Andre Carson (D-IN) represent majority White, non-majority Muslim districts.

The showing of the film, African-American Pioneer Muslimahs in Washington, DC, was an interesting representation of African-American culture.  Created by WPFW’s (89.3 FM Washington) Zarinah Shakir, the one hour presentation explores the lives of three South Carolinians who converted from Christianity to Islam in the 1940s and 1950s. 

The heartwarming stories are typical of those of other southern Blacks who moved to the North for greater opportunity.  Their stories are full of sometimes funny southernisms, but with a barely heard Islamic twist.

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The Association of Black Museums Keeps Our Stories Alive

During a session on planning exhibits at the Association of Black Museums conference in Baltimore, Kenneth Davis of the National Park Service in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia highlighted the significance museum exhibits play in our lives.  They “help convey our history and culture” to following generations, he said. 

videoiconFormer POH Editor Ann Chinn led a session on the Middle Passage Project which seeks to place markers at about 175 ports where enslaved Africans first touched the shores of their new homes.  Afterward, Chin led a well-attended ceremony honoring the more than two million ancestors who died during the Middle Passage.  She said at the ceremony at Baltimore’s Fell Point Broadway Pier, where traders once imported and sold at auction thousands of Africans, “this reaffirms our humanity.” 

No part of our story should be watered down warned Dr. Rico Chapman of Jackson State University, “it takes away the potency of that experience,” he said. Chapman teaches Introductory to Museums at the historically Black university in Mississippi.

However, every project costs money. And AJ Casey lead a discussion on fundraising where she gave five tips:  1) strengthen your board 2) tell your story 3) organize your office to be able to receive funds 4) magnify your mission and 5) partner with people.

Thanks, the last Snippets “click-through” rate soared to 40 percent, which means that once readers opened the last Snippets, 4 of every 10 clicked at least one link. The “click-through” rate is an indication of the level of interest readers had in the news and events we covered. (They typical click-through rate for all e-mails across the U.S. is from 6 to 20 percent). Some of the subjects we cover come from readers like you. Feel free to send us your thoughts.
the president and family  

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