ChickenBones: A Journal
for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes
When I woke up this morning [I] could have sworn it was judgment
day. . . .the sky was all purple, there were people runnin everywhere
trying to run from our destruction, you know I didn’t even care.”
Judgment Day and Nobody Cares
By Njai Kamau
I tremble at my country when I reflect that God is just.Abraham Lincoln
Be careful that we don’t get it twisted. I hope we’re all watchin the news concerning world events, because we could be witnessing some very dangerous but interesting times in the coming years, months, weeks or days. Escalating gas prices, legal secretive arrests, the constant fall of the American dollar and what appears to be this ever more drenching of new television shows to keep people distracted. All this, and some, is beyond an economic depression label. It’s deeper than that. The United States is at a crossroads whereby any move otha than it standing down and repenting, will result in some unconceivable events. Let me explain.
The tone of it all can be attributed to the American Government naming Iran, Iraq and North Korea as the “axis of evil.” Better known as “evildoers,” these nations have been singled out for invasion and American forms of “democracy.” One down, two to go. But then there are problems with the post-invasion Iraq. The Americans are, for the most part, seen by the people of Iraq as invaders whose presence is not welcomed. Big problem. You’ve seen the almost daily results of how they feel.
Then, there is Russia. You should know that Russia blames the US for its losing control ova the Ukraine recently. That nation was a necessary part of Russia’s new playground. The leader of Russia was not happy with losing the Ukraine-a nation that will now have friendly ties with the US.
Having already been in the works, Russia has recently signed and agreed to supply Iran with some stuff that can make bombs. Many nations do it. They say that its uses can be used for energy. The problem with this is that the stuff that it’s made of has a double use; it can be used also to make a bomb. This raises concerns for Israel as well as America. One of Israel’s neighbor is Iran and its known that Israel doesn’t get along with its neighbors as well as it should. This, in part, becuz Israel knows the US has its back. Many problems in that region alone are bubbling.
Keeping our discussion in that area, we must not forget about the conflict between Palestine and Israel. A war spanning decades, it has not ceased despite the recent death of the Palestinian leader. The United States is also tightly involved with this matter siding with Israel.
Let’s go to the Koreas. One main problem here is that the United States have labeled North Korea as an “axis of evil” member. So after some failed talks here and there, North Korea concludes that talks are goin no where. Then here comes Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice adding anotha unkind name: “outpost of tyranny.” North Korea basically responds with “F!$% it, we got nukes then.”
Not too many more unkind comments from the US directed towards the DPRK (North Korea) since then.
Staying in that same area, we have Taiwan, a very small Island not a whisper from China. The deal with those two is that Taiwan believes itself to be independent. China basically says no, “you belong to us.” China basically has taken the position that it had been doin Taiwan a favor by allowing it to “manage” if you will, the small island as long as Taiwan showed no signs of thinking it is independent. But then lately there have been rumors floating that Taiwan would soon get enough nerves and announce publicly that it is an independent nation; thereby challenging China.
China ain’t having that.
China, a recognized rising star of prestige, as well as power and might, sees Taiwan and itself as one and just recently passed a law, unanimously, Monday, March 14, 2005 to prove it.
“There is only one China in the world,” article 2 of the Anti-Secession Law states. “Both the mainland and Taiwan belong to one China.” Anotha problem the US has to deal with.
With this law, China says at least three things. First, in a bold, in-yo-face-whatchu-gon-do-move, China, in front of the world, draws a line in the sand to clear any and all doubts about what the dealie is with Taiwan. China, in essence says “this is our S#&!” Second, China is telling the international community that it is ready to take the lead or at least be on the same level to the current leader and only superpower – United States. That law, my people, speaks volumes. It’s flooded with bad signals and interpretations.
But don’t take my word for it. This is what China says about anybody who decides to get involved in the China-Taiwan issue. Under their article 3, it says, “Solving the Taiwan question and achieving national reunification, is China’s internal affair.”
Yall got to know what that means, for China to make this a law.
That part of the law finishes with “which subjects to no interference by outside forces.”
A bold and direct warning to the United States of America.
It gets scarier. The United States has vowed to stand with Taiwan in case of an invasion. This is all happening now.
A final note on the Chinese issue is that Japan supposedly will side with the US in case China launches an attack against Taiwan. So then if the Japanese people side with the US, against their Chinese neighbors, we should assume then that Japan has forgotten all about the US bombs released ova Nagasaki in 1945, jus barely a generation ago, killing 150,000 people–including women and children.
Be reminded also that the EU (European Union) has already announced in the last months that it will lift arms and weapons bans that had been placed on China for years. The Union, which America’s closest “war on terror” ally Britain is a member, believes that this ban on China is outdated and does not match with modern ways nations are dealing with each otha. This, anotha Washington fear. They believe once the ban is lifted, China cannot be trusted with where weapons might go that would directly threatened the safety of American troops. And the Americans will be faced with their own technology as well as possibly otha stuff that they had not anticipated. So lifting the ban on China is anotha bad deal for America.
Let’s go back to the so-called Middle East. We know that the US is already crushed down with Iraq and has got a trigger-finger against Iran. But then there is Syria to worry about too. Syria is believed to be, by America, to be meddling in Beirut. And also, the latter country had a important figure recently assassinated which the US is shifting some blame towards Syria.
Anotha problem for the US is that Iran and Syria recently announced a few weeks ago they would stick together against their common challenges. We know what that means.
This is the American dilemma. The United States has ruled single-handedly and with little measured resistance ova the world for hundreds of years. For ova four hundred years, the United States has shown itself to be the master of enslavement, instigation and disharmony.
But now, after years of built up anger and planning, otha powers are becoming embolden, encouraged and inspired to change the global power dynamic.
The best way to look at the situation that’s goin on is like this. Picture a really strong and intimidating aggressor whose victims have stop running from him. And now, some of these victims are beginning to openly question and challenge the aggressor’s power and authority and his ways.
There is always a way for things to change its course. But given the Maat-less personality of the United States, it is highly unlikely. You see, the US has been the big dog everywhere for hundreds of years. And they do not want to change that power dynamic. If you don’t understand this, you will not understand what’s happening. They are in a very unique position that whateva aggressive move to be made next by them, no matter what it is, the move will spark catastrophic events that you and me only see in movies.
Any well-read historian will tell you that events like these have not taken place in this so-called modern time we occupy. This is a different and defining moment we Afrikan people are in and one which the world will witness.
We’ve covered only a few incidents-either one which could spark the events–and we still have not taken into account any of the threats given by bin-Laden, the issues in Pakistan and Afghanistan, Latin America and other nations.
The wise choice would be for America to seek the real God and repent of her greatest sin.
If they don’t, we should all make sure we got stuff togetha with the real God becuz the whole world, especially us here in the US, will see Biblical-type events. Having written that, let me remind you of a Prince and the Revolution song from the 70’s titled “1999.” In that very cool song, you’ll find these words by a Brotha who had awakened out of sleep:
“When I woke up this morning [I] could have sworn it was judgment day.”
He went on to say that “the sky was all purple, there were people runnin everywhere// trying to run from our destruction, you know I didn’t even care.”
Njai Kamau © 2005 can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org *=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*a manifestation of RA
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#1 – Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark #2 – Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree #3 – Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane #4 – Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper #5 – Stackin’ Paper 2 Genesis’ Payback by Joy King #6 – Thug Lovin’ (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark #7 – When I Get Where I’m Going by Cheryl Robinson #8 – Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby #9 – The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane
#10 – Covenant: A Thriller by Brandon Massey
#11 – Diary Of A Street Diva by Ashley and JaQuavis
#12 – Don’t Ever Tell by Brandon Massey
#13 – For colored girls who have considered suicide by Ntozake Shange
#14 – For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree
#15 – Homemade Loves by J. California Cooper
#16 – The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper
#17 – Player Haters by Carl Weber
#18 – Purple Panties: An Eroticanoir.com Anthology by Sidney Molare
#19 – Stackin’ Paper by Joy King
#20 – Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey
#21 – The Upper Room by Mary Monroe
#22 Thug Matrimony by Wahida Clark
#23 – Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark
#24 – Married Men by Carl Weber
#25 – I Dreamt I Was in Heaven – The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter
#1 – Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable #2 – Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans #3 – Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane #4 – Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper #5 – Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You’re Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant #6 – Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey #7 – The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight #8 – The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing #9 – The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson
#10 – John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History by Ahati N. N. Toure
#11 – Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley
#12 –The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander
#13 – The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell
#14 – The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore
#15 – Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can’t Commit by RM Johnson
#16 – Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins
#17 – Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell
#18 – A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose by Eckhart Tolle
#19 – John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard
#20 – Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris
#21 – Age Ain’t Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice
#22 – 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino #23 – Chicken Soup for the Prisoner’s Soul by Tom Lagana #24 – 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields
#25 – Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class by Lisa B. Thompson
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By Eric Liu and Nick Hanaper
American democracy is informed by the 18th centurys most cutting edge thinking on society, economics, and government. Weve learned some things in the intervening 230 years about self interest, social behaviors, and how the world works. Now, authors Eric Liu and Nick Hanauer argue that some fundamental assumptions about citizenship, society, economics, and government need updating. For many years the dominant metaphor for understanding markets and government has been the machine. Liu and Hanauer view democracy not as a machine, but as a garden. A successful garden functions according to the inexorable tendencies of nature, but it also requires goals, regular tending, and an understanding of connected ecosystems. The latest ideas from science, social science, and economicsthe cutting-edge ideas of todaygenerate these simple but revolutionary ideas: The economy is not an efficient machine.
Its an effective garden that need tending. Freedom is responsibility. Government should be about the big what and the little how. True self interest is mutual interest. Were all better off when were all better off. The model of citizenship depends on contagious behavior, hence positive behavior begets positive behavior.
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By Russell Simmons
Russell Simmons knows firsthand that wealth is rooted in much more than the stock market. True wealth has more to do with what’s in your heart than what’s in your wallet. Using this knowledge, Simmons became one of America’s shrewdest entrepreneurs, achieving a level of success that most investors only dream about. No matter how much material gain he accumulated, he never stopped lending a hand to those less fortunate. In Super Rich, Simmons uses his rare blend of spiritual savvy and street-smart wisdom to offer a new definition of wealth-and share timeless principles for developing an unshakable sense of self that can weather any financial storm. As Simmons says, “Happy can make you money, but money can’t make you happy.”
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By Michele Alexander
Contrary to the rosy picture of race embodied in Barack Obama’s political success and Oprah Winfrey’s financial success, legal scholar Alexander argues vigorously and persuasively that [w]e have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it. Jim Crow and legal racial segregation has been replaced by mass incarceration as a system of social control (More African Americans are under correctional control today… than were enslaved in 1850). Alexander reviews American racial history from the colonies to the Clinton administration, delineating its transformation into the war on drugs. She offers an acute analysis of the effect of this mass incarceration upon former inmates who will be discriminated against, legally, for the rest of their lives, denied employment, housing, education, and public benefits.
Most provocatively, she reveals how both the move toward colorblindness and affirmative action may blur our vision of injustice: most Americans know and don’t know the truth about mass incarcerationbut her carefully researched, deeply engaging, and thoroughly readable book should change that.Publishers Weekly
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By Andrew Levy
In 1791, at a time when the nation’s leaders were fervently debating the contradiction of slavery in a newly independent nation, wealthy Virginia plantation owner Robert Carter III freed more than 450 slaves. It was to be the largest emancipation until the Emancipation Proclamation, signed by Abraham Lincoln. Levy offers an absorbing look at the philosophical and religious debate and the political and family struggles in which Carter engaged for years before very deliberately and systematically freeing his slaves as he attempted to provide a model for others to follow. Drawing on historic documents, including Carter’s letters and painstakingly detailed accounts of plantation activities, Levy conveys the strongly held beliefs that drove Carter through the political and religious fervor of the time to arrive at a decision at odds with those of other prominent leaders and slaveholders of the time, including George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. Levy offers a fascinating look at one man’s redemption and his eventual lapse into historical obscurity despite his incredibly bold actions. Well researched and thoroughly fascinating, this forgotten history will appeal to readers interested in the complexities of American slavery.Booklist
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By Michael Grunwald
Time senior correspondent Michael Grunwald tells the secret history of the stimulus bill, the purest distillation of Change We Can Believe In, a microcosm of Obamas policy successes and political failures. Though it is reviled by the right and rejected by the left, it really is a new New Deal, larger than FDRs and just as transformative. It prevented an imminent depression, while jump-starting Obamas long-term agenda. The stimulus is pouring $90 billion into clean energy, reinventing the way America is powered and fueled; it includes unprecedented investments in renewables, efficiency, electric cars, a smarter grid, cleaner coal, and more. Its carrying health care into the digital era. Its Race to the Top initiative may be the boldest education reform in U.S. history. It produced the biggest middle-class tax cuts in a generation, a broadband initiative reminiscent of rural electrification, and an overhaul of the New Deals unemployment insurance system. Its revamping the way government addresses homelessness, fixes infrastructure, and spends money.
Grunwald reveals how Republicans have obscured these achievements through obstruction and distortion. The stimulus launched a genuine national comeback. It also saved millions of jobs, while creating legacies that could rival the Hoover Dam: the worlds largest wind farm, a new U.S. battery industry, a new high-speed rail network, the worlds highest-speed Internet network. Its main legacy, like the New Deals, will be change.
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From The World and Africa, 1965
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update 21 July 2012