There was quite an uproar recently when none of this year’s selected Oscar nominees were African-Americans. Calls of boycotting the Oscars have been flying nonstop in recent days. Famous black actors such as Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith and filmmaker Spike Lee have all announced their intentions to boycott the event. Even a few white actors have expressed their disappointed with the exclusion of any blacks in the nomination process. George Clooney has been very outspoken in calling for a review of the nomination process. Yes, perhaps some changes should be in the future. Maybe we should just nominate every single actor in Hollywood, who has been involved in a film this year, for the award. While we are at it with the changes, why not just give an Oscar’s award to every single person involved in any film good or bad? By doing this, nobody’s feelings will get hurt and the world will be a much better place, right?
Since when is the qualification for an Oscars award based on the color of one’s skin? Maybe I am missing something here, but are the awards supposed to be based on talent instead? Has anyone come to the conclusion that just maybe, the reason no blacks were chosen was because of, dare I say this, talent? Perhaps this is a down period for talent in the black community. There is always a chance that things will change in the near future and there will be a number of very talented black actors come upon the scene and dominate the awards. Things come and go in cycles. Hopefully in that case, the white community will not scream and holler because no one nominates any white people.
This racial whining over the awards is utter nonsense. What if a bunch of white people suddenly decided to boycott going to say an NBA or NFL game because there are not enough white players? Have we gotten to a point in society when a person’s skin color is more important than their talent level in determining awards? If so, we are done as a society, period! Sadly we seem to be changing in this direction. Oh, we need to have a certain percentage of colored people winning the award to make things fair. Would someone please explain to me how that is fair? I think it is totally unfair to present some award to someone just because they happen to be of a certain skin color. And what about the person who worked their tail off and possesses far greater talent, yet they are left out because of some stupid color quota? Fairness is giving the nominees and awards to people who really deserve and HAVE EARNED IT! I would feel really bad if I just so happened to be a black person who was given an award just because somebody decided that there were not enough blacks getting awards or nominations.
Where is this silliness going to stop? What about Hispanics and Asians? How are we going to make sure that they are not excluded as well? The same applies to gay and straight people; surely nobody needs to be left out! Maybe the Oscars committee needs a systems where no more than a 1/3 of all nominees are allowed to be Caucasian. Better yet, lets just give everyone an Oscar for a job well done whether they have earned it or not. That is the new way of doing things in this country. The concept of earning your award and paying your dues has totally lost its meaning in today’s America. Poor Johnny the actor’s feelings will get hurt if he is not mentioned for an award even though he has absolutely zero talent! Affirmative Action used to be used for hiring purpose; in the very near future, it will used in the Oscars as well. How sad is that! If it comes to that point, they might as well cancel the Oscars and give everyone a trophy.
In an interview on a cable news network show, a state department spokesperson spoke about the growing threat of radical terrorists and what must be done to help solve this problem. One of her comments might go down as the leading candidate for preposterous statement of the year. She stated that we cannot just continue to kill these terrorists; we must also look at their economic and jobs situations. Perhaps there is a way that we can help rebuild the economies of the regions where these terrorists come from. Okay, I see. So that is part of the solution. Get a terrorist a job and he or she will stop killing innocent people and turn from their evil ways. To make a statement like that shows a total level of ignorance regarding the problem. Unfortunately, many in the current administration seem to have the same ignorant views on how to deal with the expansion of ISIS in other countries. Our president even wants us to hear the grievances of those groups. He seems to believe that hearing those grievances will go a long ways into making peace with the terrorists. Who is he trying to kid?!!
The White House even decided to hold a summit this week on how to deal with the terrorist problem. Interesting enough, one of the participants was a gentlemen who strongly believes that Israel is part of the problem. That shows you a lot about how legitimate and productive this conference probably was. The fact is, this problem of growing extremism is pretty cut and dry. Groups like ISIS want to establish a caliphate not only in the Middle East, but around the world including yes, here in the United States. They will not stop until that goal is met. Unlike the president who refuses to call it a radical form of Islam, I will. I do not understand why the president has such a tough time saying this. These terrorists have essentially hijacked the Islam religion, pure and simple. We do not need to hear their grievances, they should be well-known. They believe people who do not share their beliefs, Muslim or non-Muslim are the enemies and most be destroyed. They view the United States as being the great Satan of the world. For someone to say that giving these people better economic opportunities and jobs will change their way of thinking is utterly ridiculous!!
It is time that we quit playing softball with these cock roaches and simply do everything in our power to destroy them RIGHT NOW!!! Sending a clear and stern message that their actions will not be tolerated is the only way to go. Enough of this trying to be politically correct by not naming it radical Islam. Or deflecting the problem by bringing up the silly comparisons to the Christian religion and their past violence. The lack of leadership in dealing with the issue of radical Islam by the White House is very troubling. ISIS is expanding into other countries and their methods are becoming more and more barbaric. More and more innocent people are becoming victims of these thugs including many women and children. 21 men were beheaded last week in Libya just because they happened to be of the Christian faith. I did not hear much outrage from the White House over this incident. We are a Christian nation and this terrorist act was an act against many of us. If I were the president. I would have strongly condemned it. Instead, I hear a lecture from the same spokesperson talking about how Christian groups have committed similar acts of murder. Really? So you are saying that the number of Christian radical groups in the world poses the same danger to the world as radical Islamic groups?
I challenge that state department spokesperson to lead a job fair in Syria and let’s see how far that goes. An evil terrorist’s mind will never change no matter what their economic conditions are. The only job that matters to an ISIS terrorist is killing people including innocent men, women and children who do not agree with their doctrine. Perhaps we should use our tax money instead to help improve our economic situation. Just a thought!
In a few days from now, we will kiss 2014 goodbye and usher in 2015. When I think of the year 2014, a lot of very negative and controversial stories come to mind. I don’t know if it is just me, but the year seemed to have far more of those type of stories than normal. The news was constantly filled with bad and disturbing stories ranging from the brutal behavior of ISIS to the transgressions of Russia. Here in the United States, high-profile events surrounding police shootings and killing of unarmed men dominated the news. Politics had it normal share of controversies and stories. A person could not even turn to the sports to get any relief to all the controversy. Multiple stories of domestic abuse by NFL players dominated the sports headlines. However, the end of 2014 saw a ray of hope, gas prices went down dramatically and the economy seems to be finally picking up steam after one of the slowest post recession recoveries ever. So all was not bad last year. What will 2015 bring? Sadly, I can see more of the same; even more controversial and negative news. The following are just a few of many things that I would like to see happen in the new year.
1) Gas prices- I would love to see gas prices remain nearly 2 bucks a gallon for the whole year and possibly go lower. The chances of this happening are probably slim, but hey, even 2.50 a gallon does not sound bad after paying 3.50 last year. The lower gas prices are just what this struggling economy needed and furthermore, help bail out the awful economic policies of a few political leaders.
2) The Super Bowl- It would be great to have Peyton Manning back in the Super Bowl for one another shot at a title, however, I would like to see the Detroit Lions win the Super Bowl. Why not? To see a long time struggling franchise like them win the title would be wonderful. By the way, I am not a Lions fan, just a fan of underdog teams.
3) The police- 2014 was certainly not a great year to be a white police officer in this country. There were many stories of police brutality and several protests around the country. I still stand steadfast in my support for our police, they do a tremendous job in most cases. It would great to see a high-profile story of a white police officer saving the life of a young black teenager. Actually many do everyday but those stories get ignored. I would like the race baiting media in this country to reflect more on these type of feel good stories.
4) Gay athletes- In the upcoming year, can we just get rid of all the drama concerning some athlete coming out? As a sports fan, I could care less if some athlete, is gay, bisexual or straight. Their sexual preference is totally not important to me. I just want someone who can play. Are you listening, ESPN?
5) Better leadership in Washington- Good leaders are willing to unite, bring people together and compromise. I don’t see a whole lot of that going on in Washington. The last year was filled with bickering, stalemates and just typical fighting between both parties. Perhaps the new Congress will be this different this year, but don’t hold your breath. The Republicans have a golden opportunity to show that they can govern, will they capitalize on this opportunity?
6) NFL rule change- The NFL seriously needs to look at how the playoffs are structured. A team that wins it division should not be an automatic to host a playoff game. The top 6 teams record wise in each conference should qualify for the post-season and the seedings are based on records. The top 2 teams record wise should get byes. No more of these teams with losing records who make the playoffs just because they win their divisions.
7) Smart phones- Every year, we always see an upgrade on what some of these phones can do. I always see commercials describing how this phone or that phone can now take some of the best pictures possible. Well that is great, but can someone make a smart phone with a super battery that does not have to be recharged every day? If they are going to upgrade all these little features, at least upgrade the battery. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a phone that requires limited charging? I have one of the best, but I am constantly charging my phone.
Those are just a few things that I would like to see in 2015. I wish everyone the best of luck in the New Year and may 2015 be the best year of your life.
The very partisan CIA report that came out this week described the treatment of terrorist prisoners held by the CIA as being unusually harsh and immoral. The report apparently did not include any direct contact with any CIA officials, therefore, one has to wonder whether this report was purely a witch hunt on the CIA. Since this report came out, there has been a great deal of debate about torture on terrorists we apprehend. Some people are absolutely outraged that the CIA had the gull to force a few select terrorists into sleep deprivation and isolation. How dare the CIA do that to our enemies!! Perhaps we should just ship all those captured terrorists to a nice 5 star hotel in Bermuda and feed them with the finest foods. Then we can release them after a month of captivity so they can rejoin their fellow thugs and kill more innocent Americans.
Sure, torture is certainly outlawed according to international laws. I firmly believe that it is unnecessary on most terrorists who we capture. Many can be coerced into spilling their secrets by using simple interrogation methods from trained military personal. The percentage of terrorists who actually undergo torture is actually a very small percentage. How many of the thousands of terrorists that we have captured in the past 5 years have undergone waterboarding? Perhaps a handful. The report that came out seems to paint the CIA as some rouge agency that has no respect for any laws. For the most part, they are a great agency who deserve a lot of credit for doing a very good job in keeping us safe from further attacks since 9/11. Those who feel the need to criticize the CIA need to remember that.
For the last few days, I keep on hearing about how the United States needs to show its so-called “moral authority” around the world. Will someone please tell me how dropping bombs on villages in order to kill high-ranking terrorist officials considered using our “moral authority” Or our drone strikes? In the process, many innocent people including children end up getting killed. Where is the outrage over those situations? The fact that some people are actually concerned about how some terrorist is being treated in captivity is very mind-boggling to me. They are probably being treated much better than they deserve for killing or being a threat to innocent people.
If you want to start talking and feeling sorry for the treatment of those cowardly terrorists, how do you think the families of those killed by the terrorists feel? They have to live with the torture of reliving, in their minds, the last moments of their loved ones life for the rest of their lives. Imagine what the families of those innocent beheaded Americans are going through right now? I cannot imagine the pain and emotional torture these poor families have to deal with everyday. Those poor people who were in those buildings on 9/11 faced the ultimate torture and horror. Trying to decided whether to end your life by being burned alive or jumping 20 stories is a rather painful thought! Perhaps those anti-torture folks may change their opinions on torture if one of their loved ones or they were the victims of one of those ruthless terrorists.
Saying that torture never works and is completely ineffective is complete nonsense. It was largely responsible for getting valuable intel on the whereabouts of Osama Bin Laden. What is a better way of getting valuable intel from a defiant high level terrorist who will not talk? Having a brutal terrorist feel uncomfortable for a few weeks and coming clean with valuable information is completely worth it if it saves thousands of innocent lives. Before we start going on some moral high ground over prisoner treatments, let’s remember who these terrorists are. They are looking to kill you or I in a heart beat. Sorry, but I have a hard time feeling sorry for any terrorist who is forced to undergo sleep deprivation. They fully deserve it!! The price they pay is only a small drop in the bucket compared to what thousands of innocent people in this world have had to go through at the hands of those scumbag terrorists.
The grand jury’s decisions not to indict a police officer in the Eric Garner and Michael Brown cases have certainly created a great deal of debate and angry among many folks in this country. Protests on the streets have erupted in many cities. People are screaming for equal justice for all people, especially for the cops who killed these two individuals. It is widely believed by those protesting that minorities are getting the shaft when it comes to our criminal justice systems. In the Eric Garner case, I believe they may be correct. The police officers seemed to go totally over the top in trying to arrest some guy for the totally unthinkable crime of illegally selling some cigarettes on a street corner. The victim, Garner, was taken down by what appeared to be a choke hold by one of the officers after he resisted arrest. He later died from complications brought on by that incident. What is not mentioned by many in the media is that this guy had some pre-existing conditions unknown to the officers and this so-called choke hold by the officer was not appropriate on someone with asthma. Unfortunately, in both cases, young lives were lost and the old tired debate of race and race equality in this country has started yet again. The race baiters have been in full force during the last few weeks demanding the justice system change and be more fair to black people. While I appreciated their and the protesters passionate concerns, why are they not as vocal when it comes to an even bigger problem facing the black community, black on black crime? When a white officer happens to kill a black kid in self defense, they are up in arms and very vocal. However, when a black gang member happens to kill an innocent young child in a drive by shooting on the south side of Chicago, you don’t hear a pin drop from these folks.
For the last 3 years, there have been an average of over 400 homicides in the city of Chicago. Among them are several innocent people who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. A good many of them happened to involve blacks killing other blacks. Gang violence is a serious problem in many cities across this country and yet it is often just ignored. I never seem to see hundreds of people marching in the streets demanding the violence stop. Why is that? I hear several of those protesters talk about how this unfair treatment of police officers towards minorities as a national crisis. Really? The real national crisis is the very high homicide rates among members of the black community. The percentage of African Americans in this country is around 13 percent, yet they commit nearly half of all violent crime. That is an absolutely staggering statistic. Before anyone says that we need to start having a discussion on why blacks seemed to be targeted by police, lets start with the statistic that I just brought up. What are the black leaders doing about the seemingly non-stop violence that takes place in some of these communities? When a particular racial makeup of people commit a good portion of the crimes in the streets, the police are naturally inclined to target those groups of people. It is very unfortunate because there are so many good and innocent black people out there who are unfairly profiled by the police. A few thugs among the black community have ruined it for many.
I find it very troubling to see black leaders such as Al Sharpton and even the president use these recent events as a way to further divide people. If you listen to Sharpton and other leaders long enough, you might get the impression that white police officers are the most evil people in the history of the world. Perhaps some day, one of those evil officers might safe your life Mr. Sharpton!! That goes for those protesters who are calling for officer’s heads. If it wasn’t for the bravery of those men and women who risk their lives everyday, there would be more blacks killed on the streets. Those so-called evil police officers do far more good to the black community than people realize. Imagine a country without any police officers? Many communities in this country would be totally unlivable. I think for simple starters, people need to show more respect for these officers. Resisting arrest as in the case of Garner and Brown is a certain recipe to get on the bad side of any cop. Simply following orders when a cop pulls you over can go a long ways in preventing these incidents. Garner and Brown would still be alive today had they obeyed the officers. Instead, they chose to had an attitude and paid for it with their lives.
I appreciate and respect the passion people have on these race topics. Unlike the night of the Ferguson verdict, most of the protests have been peaceful and civil. They are completely right, black lives do matter as well as anybody’s life. Gang violence has a far greater impact on black lives than people want to admit. Unfortunately, many people want to dwell on a few isolated police incidents to state their case about how blacks are being oppressed. In my view of things, being oppressed in living in some high crime, high unemployment, crappy neighborhood where your life is in constant danger by a bunch of gang bangers. Before starting a discussion about racial profiling and being treated unfairly by the police, lets start by talking about what is really hampering many blacks, black on black crime and what can be done to bring this down and give hope and a better way of life to many African Americans.
For just over 3 months, there has been a great deal of speculation over what might happen to officer Darren Wilson following his highly publicized shooting of an unarmed black teenager. Would he be indicted on murder charges or some far less charge such as involuntary manslaughter. Or just maybe, he would not be indicted at all. Monday night, in one of the most anticipated court decisions that this country has seen since the O.J. Simpson verdict, the grand jury in the case ruled that there was not enough evidence to indict Wilson on any charges. This announcement has not sat well with many folks who have expressed their outrage in many protests, not only in Ferguson, but in many cities around the country. While I understand the emotions surrounding this incident, I have to strongly disagree with the opinions of those protesting the decision. I applaud the members of the grand jury who had the courage to make this rather difficult decision.
It is very unfortunate that we have become a pitch fork society of making judgements without knowing all of the facts. Apparently, many people must have some sort of secret powers which put them exactly at the spot of the crime. They know exactly what happened even without being there physically. I wish I had their psychic powers! A white cop shoots an unarmed black teenager; it must be a racist killing! The officer surely must have shot this poor kid because of the color of his skin. Many people jumped to conclusions on this incident including several high ranking officials of the government.
The good thing about this country (well at least for now) is that we have a justice system which considers all the facts involved with the shooting. We do not have a lynch mob rule for trying cases. The grand jury was presented with much evidence including over 70 hours of testimony, autopsy reports and good forensic evidence. It all proved that officer Wilson was very justified in what he did. The evidence clearly shows that the teenager killed, Michael Brown, assaulted the officer, tried to grab his gun and did not follow the officer’s directions one ounce. Do those protesters and people who are crying about this decision even consider being in the officer’s shoes for one minute? The officer’s life was greatly in danger. Who is to say that Brown would have grabbed the gun and shot Wilson several times? If Brown had just OBEYED orders instead of acting like some punk, he would be alive today.
Those people who are going out and protesting this decision are extremely ignorant. Justice was clearly served. The facts and the forensic evidence are overwhelming in support of officer Wilson. It is unfortunate that many of the protesters in Ferguson had to resort to violence in order to get out their frustrations. What exactly does that prove? A woman who worked very hard for years to start her own business had those dreams go up in smoke when those protesters burnt down her building along with several others. People have absolutely no respect and will not garner any sympathy for the protester’s causes when they act like a bunch of hooligans!
I am hearing a lot of talk about how the justice system is broken and this incident will be a spark for change. So what exactly needs to be changed? Perhaps we need more people to quite acting like thugs and respect people of authority. I know this sounds very simple, but it all starts with the family upbringing. It is no secret that people that normally do crime are brought up in very broken families and are not taught to respect authority figures. How can a kid begin to even grow up and respect police when their parents are bashing the cops, the songs they listen to talk about killing cops and so on?
Suppose for a minute that Wilson was a black cop, we would even hear about this incident? Of course not! The number of blacks being killed by other blacks are at some very high levels yet that often gets neglected in the media. Why aren’t people protesting to stop that kind of violence as hard and with as much vengeance as they are with this incident? I would like someone to tell me why? Something tells me this has more to do with politics than with justice. In the meantime, I hope people will just accept this decision and move on.