Daily Archive: November 5, 2009


Guest Editorial…Impatiently waiting

by Shannon Williams “There is no hardship that will not end, no trouble that will not retreat.” While this proverb from Namibia is certainly true, I’ll be the first to admit that I’m one person who is impatiently waiting for some adversities of the world to end. Earlier this week, I received an e-mail from Recorder Publisher and President Carolene Mays that was troubling to say the least. The e-mail included a 12-second video that showed President Barack Obama during a recent trip to Russia. As Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev entered a room, there were several Russian politicians in the receiving line waiting to greet the leaders. Obama extended his hand to each man. One-by-one, each man refused to shake our president’s hand. By the time Obama and Medvedev made their way to the end of the line, the look of disappointment was apparent on Obama’s face. Despite the disappointment, Obama maintained his composure in the cool and collected manner that has become his trademark.



A man’s dual love, wife and Masons

One day last week I visited the Subway on Penn Avenue in Wilkinsburg. It is one of the extremely limited number of franchises owned by Blacks, and the owners are Marlin and Wanda Metz. I had been procrastinating for some time about paying them a visit and doing an interview about the difficulties they encountered and how they addressed them. Throughout the first half hour as Marlin explained some of the business problems and how they overcame them, he mentioned his wife, Wanda, six times. It was obvious that he loved and respected his wife and partner and men are generally not that open about their feelings.


Obama’s leadership style

(NNPA)—I do not understand those people who criticize the president for taking his time to get public policy right, when much of the misery that has come to visit their lives is a result of public policy, in both the domestic and international arenas, formulated by the previous administration, that was founded on distorted information, tunnel vision and hasty judgment that produced ill-conceived decisions. In fact, Vice President Dick Cheney said that with respect to the time being taken to arrive at a policy for Afghanistan that President Obama was “dithering.” But President George Bush’s response to 9/11 was to trash careful deliberation and hastily proceed to initiate a conventional war against Iraq, when it was not at all certain that this kind of war would lead to the destruction of al-Quaida or the capture of Osama bin Laden. And despite Bush’s failure to achieve his policy goals, he never rendered his decision to the kind of deliberative process Barack Obama is using.


An open letter to a confused Gregory Kane

(NNPA)—Dear Brother Greg: You and I have had fun sparring over the years and judging by your recent column in the Washington Examiner attempting to take me to task for taking Juan Williams and Frances Rice to task for their support of Rush Limbaugh, that’s an exchange you’d like to continue. So, I’ll happily oblige you, my friend. Interestingly, you chose to quote two Limbaugh comments that I stated up front were unproven and only one from the long list of documented derogatory comments made by him. For example, you didn’t dare quote a comment that Limbaugh confirmed making to an African-American caller: “Take that bone out of your nose and call me back.”



365 days of empty

Barack Obama was elected the first African-American president of the United States a year ago yesterday and I wasn’t there to see it. Oh, I have a pretty good idea about how everyone felt that night, my Democratic friends were cheering and crying and high-fiving all over the country. My friends from abroad were sending e-mails of shock that Americans weren’t crazy cowboys after all and maybe there was hope for the planet. I could see my Republican friends that night, too, even though most everybody predicted that McCain was going to lose the electoral vote, they were still bummed. They were collectively like a 20-something-year-old guy who loses a game of one-on-one to a woman on a public basketball court. Yes, everybody knows that women can ball, and that theoretically any woman can beat any man on the basketball court, he just didn’t think it’d happen to him. That’s how McCain and most Republicans felt, losing to the first Black candidate for president of the United States. What’re the chances that that would ever happen? Interestingly enough, I missed all of this revelry and self-reflection that night, which allows me to have a more detached view of Obama’s election one year later. I was, as I often am politically, traveling through the middle.


Obama and the Afghanistan decision

(NNPA)—Most Americans forget that there’s a war going on outside—or rather more than one. In the midst of chasing after celebrities and keeping up on the latest gadgets, we’re often pushed into some sort of forced seclusion that bars us from the ongoing reality of two active wars. And for the last 18 years, a ban on coverage of dead soldiers brought back home only further masked the harsh truth of conflict. Dating back to the 1991 Gulf War, the bodies of young men and women killed overseas were blocked from media coverage—that is, until now.



Will God stop blessing America’s gay capital?

(NNPA)—Biblical literate pastors, preachers and people of faith should not remain silent as the DC City Council positions the district to become the homosexual capital of the nation. If district leaders succeed and it looks like they will, the penalty for changing the definition of marriage so men can marry men and women can marry women will have terrible spiritual and social consequences. The way all this is happening is almost as sinister as the act itself. First of all, district leaders who are always reminding the world how awful it is not to have congressional voting representation, have rammed a same-sex marriage bill through the legal process without granting residents the right to vote on it through a referendum.


Time to declare ‘peace’ on youth violence

(NNPA)—If you’re reading this in your local urban newspaper, you probably encountered at least one story about youth violence in your community before finding your way to this column. But wading through reports of violence in the news pales beside the daily real life experiences of many young people across this nation. According to a recently released Justice Department report, “More than 60 percent of the nation’s youth have been exposed to violence within the last year. Nearly one in two was physically assaulted at least once, with more than one in 10 injured in an assault.”


Africa’s Catholics must lead

The Catholic Church, despite its controversies here at home, has long been a world leader in using faith as a tool for creating a better, more just world. On the continent of Africa, where the church has a large presence, Catholic missionaries have worked to provide food and shelter to those in need. Now, church leaders are calling on the continent’s leaders to make a change in their policies and practices…or step down. A group of African bishops of the Catholic Church released a statement on corruption on the continent. Their goal was end to the self-serving policies that breed repression and tyranny in many African nations. While the bishops didn’t go so far as to single out any particular leaders, they did call on those in power who are of the Catholic faith to turn over a new leaf or resign from their posts.


From Alabama’s schoolhouse on the prairie to Tyler Perry’s ‘House of Payne’

On “Bloody Sunday,” a pregnant Julia Williams and her husband, Palmer Williams Sr., joined an estimated 600 nonviolent protesters who were chased and beaten by Alabama state troopers bent on upholding the South’s age-old, discriminatory tradition regarding Black suffrage. At the time, neither parent could have ever imagined what God had in store for their unborn son. More than four decades later, Williams has made quite a trek from his humble Alabama beginnings to the stage, television and beyond PALMER WILLIAMS JR. As “Floyd,” supervisor and owner of the apartment complex where the Tyler Perry play “Laugh to Keep from Crying” is set, Williams described his role as “basically adding to the comic relief of the show, even though the comedy is very well distributed.”