The Remake of Roots for a New Generation


The much talked about remake of the 1970's television miniseries ROOTS, starts this evening at 9 p.m. EST on the History Channel. Some are outraged at the remake of the classic, others are tired of viewing movies about the enslavement of Blacks. I can understand the first sentiment but the last one saddens me. Regardless of ethnicity, we can't fix what we don't face. Ignoring slavery won't make its history go away. 

Is there are need to expand the narrative so that it accurately portrays history? Absolutely. Without actually viewing the film, I can't offer an opinion so I encourage everyone to watch and give feedback. In 1977, there was not nearly the competition for our time and attention as there is now. There was no internet or hunderds of cable television channels as we know now so this remake might not have the audience draw of the original.

I'm looking forward this mini-series even if it's competing with Game 7 of the NBA Western Conference Finals. It's more important to know your history. Perhaps if we did, there would be more Black team owners and head coaches in professional sports.





Queen of Katwe - A Story of How to Win at the Game of Chess and How to Overcome Incredible Life Challenges


Queen of Katwe is the colorful true story of Phiona Mutesi, a young girl selling corn on the streets of rural Uganda whose world rapidly changes when she is introduced to the game of chess, and, as a result of the support she receives from her family and community, is instilled with the confidence and determination she needs to pursue her dream of becoming an international chess champion. Based on the book by Tim Crothers, Queen of Katwe stars David Oyelowo, Lupita Nyong'o and newcomer Madina Nalwanga.

The film is scheduled for release on September 23.


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The Aftermath: Breaking the Black Man and Dis-connecting the Black Community [VIDEO]

I surfed across this very powerful video of the Minister Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam. He is speaking at Benedict College in Columbia, South Carolina on September 13, 2005. You may not like Mr. Farrakhan and you may not agree with him either. If you are black, no matter where you were born, I dare you to watch this video in its entirety.


Farrakhan is on point about tactics used to break down the black man in the presence of the black woman and the black child. He is on point about how we have lost the sense of community that our common melanin used to endear. He is on point about how, in a sense, we are worse off today than we were during slavery.

Please share this video with as many black people as possible. 



Hat Tip: Black Blue Dog



Must Read on Blacks and Financial Illiteracy

Butch Graves' commentary in the February 2010 edition of Black Enterprise is a must read. If we don't take our financial health seriously we are definitely doomed. No exaggeration. Check it out.

Financial Illiteracy Will Make Us a Permanent Underclass

by Earl "Butch" Graves, Jr.

These days, I’ve become increasingly alarmed by the growing pattern of recklessness and neglect that seems to govern the management of our personal finances. Recent actions—or I should say inaction—by large numbers of African Americans have prompted me to suggest taking a bold step and declare a state of financial emergency. I make this assertion not for dramatic effect but to bring attention to the need for us to take corrective measures. If not, this self-destructive behavior will continue to threaten the future of our families for generations to come. [More]

President Obama's Letter to His Daughters

Here is a letter President Obama wrote to daughters Malia and Natasha (Sasha) prior to his inauguration. It is beautiful. Enjoy.

What would you write to the children in your life?

'What I Want for You — and Every Child in America'

By President-elect Barack Obama

Publication Date: 01/14/2009

Next Tuesday, Barack Obama will be sworn in as our 44th President. On this historic occasion, PARADE asked the President-elect, who is also a devoted family man, to get personal and tell us what he wants for his children. Here, he shares his letter to them.

Dear Malia and Sasha,

I know that you've both had a lot of fun these last two years on the campaign trail, going to picnics and parades and state fairs, eating all sorts of junk food your mother and I probably shouldn't have let you have. But I also know that it hasn't always been easy for you and Mom, and that as excited as you both are about that new puppy, it doesn't make up for all the time we've been apart. I know how much I've missed these past two years, and today I want to tell you a little more about why I decided to take our family on this journey.

When I was a young man, I thought life was all about me-about how I'd make my way in the world, become successful, and get the things I want. But then the two of you came into my world with all your curiosity and mischief and those smiles that never fail to fill my heart and light up my day. And suddenly, all my big plans for myself didn't seem so important anymore. I soon found that the greatest joy in my life was the joy I saw in yours. And I realized that my own life wouldn't count for much unless I was able to ensure that you had every opportunity for happiness and fulfillment in yours. In the end, girls, that's why I ran for President: because of what I want for you and for every child in this nation.

I want all our children to go to schools worthy of their potential-schools that challenge them, inspire them, and instill in them a sense of wonder about the world around them. I want them to have the chance to go to college-even if their parents aren't rich. And I want them to get good jobs: jobs that pay well and give them benefits like health care, jobs that let them spend time with their own kids and retire with dignity.

I want us to push the boundaries of discovery so that you'll live to see new technologies and inventions that improve our lives and make our planet cleaner and safer. And I want us to push our own human boundaries to reach beyond the divides of race and region, gender and religion that keep us from seeing the best in each other.

Sometimes we have to send our young men and women into war and other dangerous situations to protect our country-but when we do, I want to make sure that it is only for a very good reason, that we try our best to settle our differences with others peacefully, and that we do everything possible to keep our servicemen and women safe. And I want every child to understand that the blessings these brave Americans fight for are not free-that with the great privilege of being a citizen of this nation comes great responsibility.

That was the lesson your grandmother tried to teach me when I was your age, reading me the opening lines of the Declaration of Independence and telling me about the men and women who marched for equality because they believed those words put to paper two centuries ago should mean something.

She helped me understand that America is great not because it is perfect but because it can always be made better-and that the unfinished work of perfecting our union falls to each of us. It's a charge we pass on to our children, coming closer with each new generation to what we know America should be.

I hope both of you will take up that work, righting the wrongs that you see and working to give others the chances you've had. Not just because you have an obligation to give something back to this country that has given our family so much-although you do have that obligation. But because you have an obligation to yourself. Because it is only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you will realize your true potential.

These are the things I want for you-to grow up in a world with no limits on your dreams and no achievements beyond your reach, and to grow into compassionate, committed women who will help build that world. And I want every child to have the same chances to learn and dream and grow and thrive that you girls have. That's why I've taken our family on this great adventure.

I am so proud of both of you. I love you more than you can ever know. And I am grateful every day for your patience, poise, grace, and humor as we prepare to start our new life together in the White House.

Love, Dad      

The Jonestown Tragedy

On November 18, 1978, 909 people either committed suicide or were massacred at the Jonestown settlement in Guyana. Many of the dead were black; 303 were children. In search of a world of equality and freedom for all people, these folks actually found a living hell on Earth.

Among the murdered were California congressional representative Leo Ryan and a news crew who were visiting the site after accusations of mistreatment there. Many of the Jonestown residents were from California. A few folks survived the mass suicide orders of the Rev. Jim Jones head of The People's Temple.    

The 30th anniversary of the mass suicide at Jonestown, Guyana is commemorated in a riveting documentary on CNN narrated by Soledad O'Brien. It's one thing to have seen the television movie of Jonestown back in 1980 and quite another emotion in viewing the actual raw footage of Jonestown and the many people who would later be found dead. O'Brien also interviews several survivors of Jonestown.

That entire incident seems so unreal but Jim Jones showed just how a people's mind can be controlled. It was that horrible incident from which the term "drinking the Kool-aid" originated.



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Body of Boy is Julian King

The body of the young boy found in the white SUV was Julian King; he was shot multiple times. This brings the number of dead to three as a result of the multiple slayings that started on Friday.

There are no words to describe the pain that Jennifer Hudson and the rest of the Hudson family are experiencing. Ms. Hudson's brother-in-law is in custody and held for parole violations. He and his girlfriend gave conflicting information regarding his whereabouts.

To lose loved ones in such a tragic manner is more than devastating. The person or persons involved must be brought to justice. I pray for the Hudson family's strength during this situation. I also pray for the mercy and uplift for the souls of Darnell Donerson, Jason Hudson and Julian King. Ashe'.   


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Vote for this blog for Best Pop Culture Blog and Best Blog About Stuff in the 2009 Bloggers Choice Awards.