Ben Carson: Not You Too? Corruption And Nepotism Alleged

We knew… we all knew including his supporters, that Ben Carson was unqualified to be the head of a large Federal bureaucracy as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. He had previously disputed the need for the department and has done little except to oversee its gradual dismantling.

It seems Carson has shown himself quite compatible with the rest of the administration by engaging in overt corruption, even after being warned by even the Trump ethics officials that what he was about to do was wrong.

a a a a a ben carsonn

Last year when Carson initiated his “listening tour” shortly after the election to get feedback from area business leaders, in Baltimore, where Carson was made famous for his surgical exploits at Johns Hopkins Hospital. His wife, son, and daughter-in-law attended several Baltimore events to understand about future business opportunities. After being specifically warned by Linda Cruciani, HUD’s Deputy General Counsel for Operations. Carson promised there would be “no conflict of interest.”

a a a a a ben carsoon

Ben Carson, Jr., a local Baltimore businessman, also invited several associates and was involved in coordinating the Baltimore event. Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (Crew) has filed Freedom of Information Requests to see if the public is paying Carson’s family members for things like; Bible study sessions at the White House, and private plane travel for family members. Other watchdog groups have requested information but apparently, Ben Carson has denied fee waivers for any request for information regarding subjects that might shed a negative light on Carson and his family. The Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRW) filed a lawsuit in the US District Court for the District of Columbia. There are allegations of a $485 million No-Bid contract being awarded to Carson’s daughter-in-law. I’m sure Ben was taught growing up as a child that, “you can’t do what they do.” He should have listened.

Carson’s $31,000 Dining Room Set

The Time A Black Man Went To The Doctor And It Saved His Life

Photo: pininterest.com

Okay I’m one of them… a black man that doesn’t like going to the doctor. I think I came by it honest. When I grew up in Minneapolis, and like all the other black kids there, I went to Dr. William Brown, Jr. He shared a downtown office with his father, Dr. Brown, Sr. And the wait time was never less than three hours. Whether my continued objection to seeing doctors is merited or not is arguable, but I am in the category of those that don’t like going.

I should stipulate I have employer provided health insurance from a major provider. I get one free visit annually which I take advantage of, mostly because they won’t renew my high blood pressure medications without me seeing an actual doctor from time to time. It was a physician that discovered the initial blood pressure problem but that was during a physical required to play basketball so that doesn’t count as a voluntary visit.

I went to my doctor after returning from a long road trip, because I was experiencing shortness of breath when lying flat which was affecting my sleep and compounding into always being tired. Because it was January and I had my free visit to use, I went to the doctor. There was a crowded waiting room (isn’t that always the case) which was almost all women except for a couple men who were obviously with their wives who had dragged them there. One elderly woman commented to her friend, “Look at this waiting room, that’s why men are always dying, they never go to the hospital.”

After seeing the doctor, (the wait was only about a half-hour), he decided I might be suffering from sleep apnea and referred me to a sleep study, and for blood work (they always do that on the free visit so you have to come back for a paid visit to get the results). Before I got a chance to get the sleep study done, I noticed an unusual pain in my left pectoral muscle that all my intuition and Internet research couldn’t explain away and I was certain wasn’t sleep apnea. It so happened I talked to one of my brother’s in Ohio and I mentioned my symptoms and that I was going to the ER to get checked out. That was my way of speaking it into existence because the clock would only be ticking until we talked again and he asked how things went. I was now committed!

The next morning, I didn’t eat breakfast in case any tests required fasting, around 10am I gathered myself up and went to the hospital ER. I even packed a small bag of toiletries and extra clothes in case I ended up staying and wouldn’t have to send someone to gather up the things I already had with me. Walking into the ER waiting room was a reminder of Dr. Brown, Jr’s office but they (unlike Dr. Brown) had a triage process and I guess my symptoms (and possibly the fact I had insurance) got me moved up to the front of the line. Within a few minutes they put me into a wheelchair and rolled me into a nearby room.

I was first met by Aidan, who introduced himself saying, “Your wife called ahead and made sure you got a male nurse today.” After talking for a few minutes nonstop, he asked, “are you married?”

“No”

“So, you knew I was lying”

“It’s your lie, I was just letting you run with it.”

“How long have you been divorced?”

“About four years.”

“I’m newly single myself.”

Aidan then took the next ten minutes to tell me about his ex, how much happier he was without her, and that he missed her. Fortunately, we were interrupted by a doctor which temporarily brought his tale of woe to an end. I was ultimately given an IV drip, EKG’s, a CAT scan, Echocardiogram, and chest x-ray before someone finally said. “We’ve discovered blood clots in both of your lungs.” That got my attention.

During the day, as they’d long ago told me I’d be spending a few nights, I had texted my two local children who indicated they would come by. I told them I was fine and there was no need to rush but was unsurprised when my youngest daughter arrived an hour before she was supposed to get off work. Then to my dismay, she started talking to Aidan who proceeded to tell her most of the people with what I have are discovered after they drop dead. My son and his family arrived, his girls confiscated the remote control and turned to the Disney Channel. Aidan commented on how wonderful my son’s family looked noting, “I’m recently single.”

Eventually I was given a room, on a different floor and away from Aidan. I was given dinner eventually, my first meal of the day (although my daughter brought me some Chick-Fil-A despite my being a Pescatarian). I saw more doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals and was told I should only be staying two nights instead of three although there will be a lot of follow-up (more doctor visits). If I do the right thing, I can expect a full recovery and live a full and productive life. Maybe dance at Aidan’s next wedding.

The bottom line is, had I not gone to the doctor(s), the next medical incident might have well been death. No new complaints, no gradual worsening of symptoms… death. No matter the inconvenience, wait time, even cost, black men need to go to the doctor more often because there is no better investment than in your health. If you won’t do it for yourself, do it for someone you love, just do it!

Share this with a man you know that might need the hint!

“Black Woman,” by Fee Thomas

Photo: kamdora.com

Note: Reprinted with the permission of Fee Thomas, because great words must never disappear. William Spivey

You let him beat you down, make you feel so small

Tell you the Truth, it mystifies me all

It’s like you don’t even know who you are

And here it is, your genes have traveled so far

Sister friend, why do you look at me so quizzically?

Do you not know that you are tied to your lineage intrinsically?


So here you sit, proving that you are the strongest of your line

Go ahead, shake your head — that’s just fine

Lean back awhile I’ll tell you more

Your line goes back to when they first hit America’s shore

In slave ships they were; bound and gagged

Until they hit the marketplace for sale and tagged

On to the plantation, for beatings and rapes

The daring ones… up for escapes


Your lineage surviving mass disease and incarceration

Your people living through racism and segregation

Jim Crow, lynchings, mass inequality

The women in your line said I’ll beat all three

So as you sit now in your skin

I want you to take a moment and remember your kin


Evolution always moves up

To you, I tip my cup

Because you exist, that proves you are the best of your line

Sister friend you are doing just fine

Just do one thing for me, please

This moment, I must seize

The next time he wants to tear you down or call you “bitch”

Make sure to tell him there’s one little hitch


You carry too many great women along with you for a word that shady

Besides, you are too busy being a lady

You are from what the slave ships stayed alive

Because yes, Darling, only the strong survive


“When I write there is no thought. It is complete invocation of Spirit and heart. I write, simply, because I cannot stop.” Fee Thomas

Photo: Clare Songbirds

Released by: Clare Songbirds Publishing House https://www.claresongbirdspub.com/shop/coming-soon/

Jemele Hill: “Undefeated” And Set Free!

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Jemele Hill has been catching hell for staying true to herself, even if that meant taking on the President of the United States, who she called a “white supremacist,” in a Tweet. Fighting with one hand tied behind her back. She had to recognize the dictates of her employer, ESPN, where she co-hosted Sports Center-6 with Michael & Jemele, with good friend Michael Smith.

Although white ESPN personality Katie Nolan called Trump, “a fucking stupid person” and was not penalized. When Jemele Hill made her Tweet, it was met with calls for her firing from the President himself. She ultimately was suspended by ESPN for two weeks after a second incident where she spoke the truth about resisting Dallas Cowboys owner, Jerry Jones.


Rather than spend the rest of her career walking on eggshells, waiting for the next offended party to come for her after speaking her mind. Jemele requested a move which now encourages her to speak her mind on race and politics instead of being stifled. Hill will be moving within ESPN to, “The Undefeated,” one of ESPN’s digital properties, focusing on the intersection of sports, race, and culture. When asked about the change, Hill said the following:

““There is an old adage that says, the heart wants what it wants. I started at ESPN 11 years ago as a columnist and while I have worn many hats in the time since, my true love always has been writing, reporting and commentary. While I have grown in every way imaginable this last year on the 6 p.m. SportsCenter, deep down I knew it wasn’t my calling. I approached (ESPN Executive Vice President, Content) Connor Schell recently and asked if they would consider re-thinking my role. And as has been the case throughout my 11 years at this company, ESPN graciously worked with me to determine the best way for me to continue to do meaningful work.”

Jemele now has a forum where she can speak her mind freely on all the things some would rather she didn’t. Looking forward to seeing what her new freedom looks like?

Ivan Dixon: He Did It Well!

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Chances are if you know Ivan Dixon at all. It was due to his recurring role as Staff Sgt. James “Kinch” Kinchloe on the long-running “Hogan’s Heroes” television show from the late 1960’s. While that show was a comedy, they occasionally touched on some of the serious aspects of what it was like for a black man in a Nazi prisoner-of-war camp. In spite of his position as a prisoner, we never saw “Kinch” taking any smack from the Nazi’s or his fellow prisoners. The same could be said about his whole career.


When I was a young boy, my mother liked to watch the Perry Mason series where he solved a murder every week. In those days of few television channels and usually one set per household, that meant I watched Perry Mason too. Recently, to take a break from politics, Trump, writing, and other forms of madness, I watch old reruns of Perry Mason which both entertain and take me back to a place. I’ve recorded them chronologically and made the following observations.

The early episodes of Perry Mason had no black people whatsoever. Based in Los Angeles, they managed to show Mexican’s, South American’s, Chinese Nationals and immigrants, farmers, miners, ranchers, and Native Americans…but nobody black. Then around mid-1962, I started to see black people. Not in major roles by any means, but almost always in a positive manner, providing key information, occasionally making it as far as the witness stand to say a few words. They were never the defendant, suspect, judge, attorney, or murderer, I considered it baby steps. Then one episode we saw Ivan Dixon briefly as Board of Pharmacy Inspector Maurice Parnell. He must have made a good impression because the following year he returned as John Brooks (pretending to be Caleb Stone) and had perhaps more lines on screen than all the black people combined that had ever appeared before on the show.


I got interested in his career and found he grew up in Harlem, on the same block as Ralph Ellison (Invisible Man) and near the Hines Brothers, Gregory, and Maurice. He moved to North Carolina where he graduated from North Carolina Central University (NCCU) and studied drama. The current theater troupe carries his name, The Ivan Dixon Players. While there he pledged Omega Psi Phi Frraternity, Inc.

He went back to New York and appeared on Broadway including in Lorraine Hansberry’s, “Raisin In The Sun.” Taking his craft to Hollywood he co-starred with Dorothy Dandridge in a TV episode, doubled for Sidney Poitier in, “The Defiant One,” and got roles on “Laramie,” “Twilight Zone,” and,”The Fugitive” before getting the roles on Perry Mason. In 1964, he starred in an independent film, “Nothing But a Man,” with Abbey Lincoln, which Dixon thought of as his finest work. Shortly afterward he landed his role on “Hogan’s Heroes,” for which he’s best known.


Two things were quite noticeable as I reviewed Dixon’s career. He worked… a lot. Maybe that era’s Samuel L. Jackson he stayed busy. And the roles he played were of serious men, no cooning for him. Ivan Dixon played doctors, judges, military men, and entrepreneurs. When he mostly finished acting, he directed, including episodes of “The Waltons,” “The Rockford Files,” “Magnum, P.I.,” “The Bionic Woman,” and “The A-Team.” He directed the film, “Trouble Man,” with the Marvin Gaye soundtrack and the controversial, “The Spook Who Sat By The Door.” That film was largely suppressed, with the help of the FBI because it made some people uncomfortable about the prospect of black revolution.

Later in life he owned and operated a radio station in Maui, Hawaii before moving back to North Carolina where he died in 2008. It’s not Black History Month yet but there’s never a wrong time to notice a man’s work, or too late. Ivan Dixon, you make me proud. Job well done!

Stacey Dash: Can She Get Her Black Card Back?

Originally posted in AAMBC Journal

ENIGMA IN BLACK

Photo: bossip.com

So, we find out that Stacey Dash was fired from her job as a contributor at Fox News… last fall. We can be excused from not knowing this earlier because neither she nor Fox News has mentioned it and on her twitter feed, it’s reported she was still shown as working for Fox although when I looked, that was gone. So you got fired and were too embarrassed to tell anybody? It’s happened to a whole lot of people before and there is really no shame in no longer being associated with Fox. It might have been a little better if you’d left of your own will. We’re not going to dwell on the past though but look forward. What are you going to do now?

In recent years, you literally made your living attacking black politicians, black institutions, black media outlets, and pretty much blackness in general…

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Stacey Dash: Can She Get Her Black Card Back?

Photo: bossip.com

So, we find out that Stacey Dash was fired from her job as a contributor at Fox News… last fall. We can be excused from not knowing this earlier because neither she nor Fox News has mentioned it and on her twitter feed, it’s reported she was still shown as working for Fox although when I looked, that was gone. So you got fired and were too embarrassed to tell anybody? It’s happened to a whole lot of people before and there is really no shame in no longer being associated with Fox. It might have been a little better if you’d left of your own will. We’re not going to dwell on the past though but look forward. What are you going to do now?


In recent years, you literally made your living attacking black politicians, black institutions, black media outlets, and pretty much blackness in general. Less than two weeks ago, you came for Oprah after her rousing speech at the Golden Globes Awards that started talk of her running for President in 2020. You’ve condemned the existence of and need for black television networks. Maybe you just forgot your recurring role in “The Game” on BET in 2009.

You voted for Barack Obama in 2008 but soon went to the dark side. You endorsed Mitt Romney in his 2012 bid to unseat President Obama. Once you joined Fox News in 2014, it wasn’t long before you criticized an Obama speech, saying, “I feel like he could give a shit!” Fox suspended you temporarily for the language, but you stood by your comments, endearing you to the same people who love Trump now. But Fox’s need for you was related to their need to have a black face spouting negative propaganda about a black President. Since he’s gone, so are you. But as I said before, we’re going to focus on your future. What to do now?


Let’s start by categorizing your assets. You’re 50-years old, not a great number for a Hollywood actress with no serious dramatic roles in her portfolio. Twelve years ago you posed for Playboy magazine, and while you’re still attractive, there isn’t exactly a swell building to see more nude photos. You’ve been accused of bleaching your skin to appear lighter (which you’ve strenuously denied) and having multiple cosmetic surgeries but we’re going to go high and just ignore the gossip. You’re most associated with the 1995 film, “Clueless” but that’s not quite the image we’re going for here.


What we need to do is totally remake your image, not by creating a new facade but by introducing people to the Stacey they’ve never seen. Not the holier-than-thou diva who presumes to tear down all things black, presenting yourself as being wiser than the rest of us. You have a story to tell and you should find someone to help you tell it. As Langston might say (you might not know who Langston is but just roll with me, Stacey). “Life for you ain’t always been no crystal stair.” You’ve been through some stuff that a lot of people can identify with. You did cocaine as a teenager, been married three times, considered abortion, and was raped at gunpoint by an ex in front of your newborn baby. People might be willing to give you a chance, but you have to come to them, openly, with humility and sincerity.


Now when I said someone should help sell your story, I didn’t mean me, because I’m petty. I’m never going to forget your appearances shilling for Fox, attempting to lend credibility to their agenda by allowing their views to appear more reasonable when coming from a black face. Whenever they needed a little negativity, you were right there. If you believed it all yourself, that makes you self-hating and despicable. If you didn’t believe and only did it for the money… that’s worse. I may one-day forget, possibly even forgive, but none too soon. Bye, Stacey!