March 2 - March 15, 2017
On The Dock This Issue:
Demographic Change and America’s Future
African-Americans, as group, do vote in proportion to its population size - - with Black men without a college degree remaining an under-represented subgroup.
Rev. William Barber - Recovering the Moral Center
There is no “so-called left versus right,” Reverend William Barber strongly clarified at the FamiliesUSA conference, there is the “right versus wrong!” Using historical and religious text, Barber called on those who support issues from universal health care to reproductive rights to use a “new language.”
The current words he says are “too puny when trying to recover the moral center.” When calling on people to find a “new tongue,” he made it clear that “alternative facts” are simply “alternative lies,” and should be called as such.
He implored even otherwise moral politicians who talk about helping the middle class, but not “the poor.” Not mentioning the poor, he said, is an act of “attention violence.”
“Without Barack Obama, there would be no Donald Trump,” he continued as the crowd increasingly showed their excitement. Barber, who recently announced the expansion of boycotts against North Carolina and is the author of The Third Reconstruction
, explained how whenever America made racial progress, there was a following whitelash, including with the election of Rutherford B. Hayes, Richard Nixon, and Donald Trump.
The former football player also warned people not to accept the notion that one is not racist, just because they claim to have one Black friend. “Even Strom Thurmond liked Black women
,” he said referring to the staunch White supremacist who fathered a Black child, which was not fully revealed until after his death.
As in past “DeConstruction” eras, Barber, who is also President of the North Carolina NAACP, said the unification of diverse groups will prevail with a new wave fueled by what is morally correct.
He warned people not to accept the notion that one is not racist, just because they claim to have one Black friend. “Even Strom Thurmond liked Black women,” he said of the White supremacist who fathered a Black child.
He pointed to a number of ironies including how poor Whites in the South often vote for politicians who vote away their health care in the name of protecting them from LGBT, Muslims, immigrants, and others. In the meantime, he insisted on reaching out to those who voted their fears. “We have to show them the deception,” he says.
During his speech, Barber cited a number of Bible verses that speak to how one should treat aliens including: The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the LORD your God. Leviticus 19:34
More Bible Verse on Equal Treatment of Aliens
The United States is becoming more racially diverse, older, and better educated. In 1980, when The Rubiks cube was popular, Richard Pryor burned himself freebasing cocaine, and Robert Johnson launched Black Entertainment Television, the country was 80 percent White. Whites are now about 62 percent of the population. In 2060, the USA will be 44 percent White.
In 2016, California, New Mexico, and Texas joined Hawaii at becoming majority non-White. Rob Griffin of the Center for American Progress pointed out at a Bipartisan Policy Center
forum that those three states plus Georgia have had the greatest demographic shifts and where Donald Trump did worse than Mitt Romney.
But, not all Americans vote equally. Asian and Hispanics tend not to vote in proportion to their population size. African-Americans, as a group, do vote in proportion to its population size - - with Black men without a college degree remaining an under-represented subgroup.
Whites still make up a larger share of the voter pool in relationship to their population largely because they are often older and citizens. However, with the demographic changes, the White over representation as voters is starting to diminish. Griffin says that the emergences of native-born Hispanics will make the White advantage of having older voters with citizenship “non-existent.”
And while voter barriers are a problem in non-White communities, registration reform in mostly White Oregon did not live up to expectations. In Oregon, the state registered all eligible voters - - with the option to opt out. However, when elections are over, new voters vote at half the rate of seasoned voters.
Anita Dunn, former White House communications director and Obama campaign official, urged Democrats to continue talking to working class Whites, but figure out “why economic issue cannot cut across racial lines.” She acknowledged that Bush made steps to engage non-White voters, but told her Republican counterpart, Alex Lundry of Deep Root Analytics, “You took a step back in this election.”
However, Griffin believes that the antagonism from the current president may really be a blessing for progressives. With the Black vote already consolidated in the Democratic column, Griffin warns that Trump is “risking to do the exact same thing” with Asians and Hispanics.
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Tony Browder Comments on New Museum in Coming Book
“The National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) is the latest architectural structure in D.C., which validates my 31-year-old research into the efforts to architecturally and symbolically re-create Egypt on the Potomac,” says Tony Browder, creator of the Egypt on the Potomac Field Trip
and who conducts Study Tours to Egypt
The NMAAHC is the jewel in the crown of the Smithsonian Institution’s 19 museums. David Adjayen, an architect from Ghana, paid homage to architectural motifs from Nigeria and Egypt when he designed the building’s facade.
The three tiered bronze Corona that graces the exterior of the Museum represents the carved wood columns within Yoruba shrines, and they also resemble three inverted pyramids. “They are built to an angle of 17 degrees to match the angle of the pyramid atop the Washington Monument,” continued Browder, author of “Nile Valley Contributions to Civilization (Exploding the Myths).”
The Chicago native says his excavation work in Egypt is “going strong.” “We restored one room in the tomb of Karakhamen and the opening was attended by the Minister of Antiquity and Governor of Luxor along with a boatload of dignitaries,” he says. They also found a 10-ton sarcophagus in the burial chamber off Karabasken.
But one of his biggest finds says Browder, was when, “I discovered a Sankofa symbol on the ceiling of two 25th dynasty tombs - - evidence proving that we traveled from the Nile to the Niger, to the Potomac and Mississippi.”
He added, more specifically, that the discovery "adds weight to the oral traditions of Africans in Ghana, Mali, Senegal, Nigeria, Cameroon, Togo, and Benin who said their ancestors migrated from the Nile River Valley into the Niger River Valley centuries ago."
Browder is working on a new book that will explore the architecture and exhibits within the NMAAHC, “An African Ark: The Architectonics of the National Museum of African American History and Culture.” It is due in July 2017.
West Africans Leading by Example
The Economic Community Of West African States
(ECOWAS) showed the world how to diffuse a crisis this year when it successfully removed Yahya Jammeh from power in The Gambia. After several meetings, often lead by ECOWAS leader and Liberian president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and a show of force by a trans-African military, the man who had been president for 22 years, now resides in Equatorial Guinea. Jammeh had said he would rule for a billion years and moved to a nation that has had one president for almost four decades.
Adama “No Drama” Barrow took office on January 19 after Jammeh accepted, than denied defeat. Jammeh, who made claims of discovering a cure for HIV, also often rattled his neighbors including Senegal, which surrounds Gambia on three sides.
Since Barrow’s election, the European Union has pledged $238 million to the country of 1.8 million people. Barrow has expressed respect for a free press and that has pleased Gambian BBC World Service contributor Saikou Suwareh Jabai. “I feel excited about the coming of the new president because his arrival marks the end of the past government that made The Gambia a living hell for journalists and other human rights defenders. A number of journalists were killed, some seriously tortured, and others forced to exile,” said Jabai, who also publishes The Stone Circle
For first time voter 21-year-old Rugiatou Bah, the possibility of being included is tantamount. “Well, I believe that there will be changes as expected from him and that we as the youth will be given a chance to take part in the nation’s development and make positive changes in the interest of the people,” she said.
PBS’ Birth of a Movement – Free – Online Until March 5
One hundred years ago, blackface and other offensive media representations of African Americans were not only common, but celebrated. Few cultural moments encapsulate this more fully than D.W. Griffith's "The Birth of a Nation" (1915), a notoriously Ku Klux Klan-friendly reimagining of history.
"Birth of a Movement," a new film now streaming on PBS
, tells the story of William Monroe Trotter, an African-American newspaper editor and activist, who, along with the then newly-formed NAACP, waged a battle against the film. Together, Trotter and the NAACP unleashed a conflict that still rages today about race relations, representation, and the power of Hollywood.
Narrated by Danny Glover and featuring interviews from Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Spike Lee, "Birth of a Movement" captures the backdrop to this clash between human rights, freedom of speech, and a changing media landscape.
The film is now streaming free on PBS until March 5. A use this guide
about the themes, issues, and feelings the film brings to light is also available.
Colors of Life: The Exposure Group Traveling Exhibition
Center for the Arts At the Candy Factor
9419 Battle Street
through Fri, Mar 3, free
The Gin Game
1201 N Royal
now through Sun, Mar 12, $
Bus trip to Harriet Tubman Museum & Discovery Center
17th Annual State of MD Harriet Ross Tubman Day of Remembrance program
Sat, Mar 11, 65/$75pp
2nd Annual Mother’s Day Good Music Festival
Tyrese, Anthony Hamilton, Kem, Brandy, and MAJOR
National Black Memorabilia, Fine Art, & Collectible Show
Montgomery County Fairgrounds
I-270 South, Exit 11
Sat, Apr 8 10a-7p - Sun, Apr 9 10a-5p, $
Baltimore Beard and Barber EXpo 2017
Baltimore NaturalhairCareExpo 2017
Baltimore Skin and make up Expo
Baltimore Cannabis Education Workshops
Coppin State University
Sat, Apr 1- Sun, Apr2, 11a-7p, $25-$50