Commentary (140)

Beware of Political Hoaxes

Written by Thursday, July 28, 2016
By: Willie Brown As convention season comes to a close, you can expect all types of political shenanigans popping up to influence the outcome of the General Election. One persistent rumor floating around on YouTube is that some disaster is on its way that will keep President Obama in office beyond Inauguration Day. Supposedly, America will be under martial law and neither Trump nor Clinton will be able to assume office. The details are very sketchy, and similar stories surfaced during previous elections. It is a ploy to keep folks from voting. Please don’t buy it. Political hoaxes during election…

When Plagiarism is Good

Written by Thursday, July 21, 2016
By: Willie Brown They say imitation is the highest form of flattery. Well, Melania Trump, wife of GOP president hopeful Donald Trump, paid First Lady Michelle Obama a pretty big compliment Monday night, when she chose to lift passages out of Obama’s 2008 convention speech and claim them as her own. Had it not been for a wide-awake local journalist, who just happened to recall certain phrases delivered by Michelle at the Democratic National Convention in 2008, no one would have been the wiser. You’ve got to admit that the obviously plagiarized speech was inspiring, and in a different world,…

What Inglewood Police Can Teach the Nation

Written by Thursday, July 14, 2016
What Mayor Butts and the Inglewood Police Dept. did Sunday night is another example of what is right in this city. And although the mayor has his share of critics, no one can argue that with zero arrests or casualties, the Black Lives Matter demonstration was successful. The voices of BLM supporters were clearly heard and no one had to die or get injured because of it. The incident was dealt with in Inglewood in much the same way protests are dealt with in white communities. You typically will not see police beating up on white people unless protests become…

When Will It End?

Written by Thursday, July 07, 2016
By now you have most likely seen the horrible video of Alton Sterling, a 37 year-old black man, husband and father who was shot dead, point blank by a white police officer in Baton Rouge, LA. Every time I see another video of a high-profile shooting death of a black man by white police, I ask myself, “When is this going to stop?” Now it seems that police don’t even care if they are caught on video shooting people in cold blood, even when the suspect is restrained, and even in broad daylight. Remember Michael Slager, the ex-cop in South…

Red Cross Racist Poster Inexcusable

Written by Friday, July 01, 2016
Summer is officially “on.” And with it, comes concerns about safety, especially for our children. When we think of life-threatening situations, the American Red Cross comes to mind as one of the champions—always ready to help and rescue. That’s why it was so shocking to read that this disaster relief icon put out a poster about swimming pool safety that was so blatantly racist. Does racism have to seep into swimming rules? Can’t we at least remain color blind about safety? The poster mostly labels the black children as misbehaving or “not cool.” The white children, however, are mostly labeled…
It’s going to be a long night in the House. As I write, Democrats are literally occupying the floor of Congress, much like people did a few years back with the Occupy Wall Street Movement, and even further with the Civil Rights Movement. Getting the attention of the “powers that be” has moved from public parks to the Halls of Congress, which is where this new phase of civil rights protests have taken us. Democrats want an up and down vote from Senate Republicans on four gun control measures presented last week, and which passed in the House. They’ve staged…

A Great Dad, No Matter What

Written by Thursday, June 16, 2016
Unlike marriage vows, parents don’t make public promises to stick with their kids in rough times, in sickness, until death. But the commitment is written in our hearts, it is inherent in the sacrifices we make day in and day out to be our best for them, even when we want to focus on ourselves. In honor of Father’s Day, and in light of the recent tragedy in Orlando, we are reminded of the critical role fathers play in shaping their children. I cannot imagine a more horrifying prospect than being the father of someone like Omar Mateen, the man…

Will You Be Next to Make History?

Written by Thursday, June 09, 2016
Last night Hillary Clinton made history as the first woman named the presumptive presidential nominee for a major-party. Closer to home, a local hero, Willie Agee was honored by having the new playhouse at Edward Vincent Jr. Park named after him. About two weeks ago, Inglewood was named as the site for the 2021 Super Bowl—another first. Because recognition comes in many different forms and levels, most of us don’t think of ourselves as history makers. But, really we are all change agents in some way. It’s just a matter of doing something new, being the first to do it,…

Who I am Endorsing and Why (Part II)

Written by Thursday, June 02, 2016
A couple of weeks ago, I announced my endorsements. I have added a few more, including one for president. Consider my reasons, then decide for yourself on June 7. State Attorney General Kamala Harris is running for the U.S. Senate. She is hoping to replace Sen. Barbara Boxer, who is retiring. Attorney General Harris gets my vote because she, like Sen. Boxer, is a fighter who has earned the respect of Californians. This was particularly evident after she was elected in 2010. The country was still reeling from the economic crisis. California was one of the hardest hit foreclosure states.…
While folks are up in arms over Donald Trump’s racist views, most recently witnessed by violent protests in New Mexico, racism is not limited to skin color. Like many, I was appalled to learn Clarence Thomas—the only African American Supreme Court Justice—was also the sole dissenter in a case involving racism in jury selection. As a black man and a judge, he should be all too familiar with injustice as it relates to African Americans on trial—even if he, personally, may have never been in legal trouble. Surely he must know that the disproportionately high rate of incarcerated black men…
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