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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

At risk of sounding political, but I’ll also be factual here, what you see in this film and community is the failures of public housing in America. And essentially forced segregation of not just the races, but of the economic classes for lack of a better term in America. Where you had middle class communities that are doing well. Upper class communities that are doing very well. And then lower class communities where the people there get what is left. Which is run-down apartment buildings, run-down schools. High crime rates where no one with real money wants to invest. And you create a community that looks like a big city inside of a third world country.

Public housing by itself is not a problem because that has prevented a lot of homelessness in America. But how its been run and managed in America especially for the kids being trapped in such run-down communities in run-down neighborhoods. A lot of times in single-parent families where the father is out of the picture for one reason or another. Where the mother might not even have a high school diploma let alone any college experience. Working two or three jobs to support her several kids, if she’s working at all. And having communities like this has serious costs. For the people who live there obviously, but for the country as a whole that has to try to makeup for what these families aren’t able to provide for themselves.

And the way public housing has been run in America has negatively affected the African-American community probably more than any community in the country other than the American-Indian community. Because African-Americans have generally had a poverty level twice that of the national average. And much higher than the Caucasian-American and Asian-American communities in America. And this is something that we should stop doing as a country and instead having public housing buildings in middle class communities. With education, job training and work opportunities for the people in these communities so they don’t have to live in public housing at all.
Bronzeville by address : Saint Lawrence Ave. through State St

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

I think the point of this film is that a lot that has been written about African-Americans about American history has been incorrect and stuff that is true about the community has been left out. Which almost fifty-years later is pretty obvious, but back in 1968 it certainly wasn’t. And that African-Americans themselves probably weren’t very familiar with their history especially the positive aspects of it. And probably weren’t even taught about it. It wasn’t until the 1880s or so that African-Americans were allowed to learn how to read, let alone get an education. Because they were treated by Caucasian-Americans as animals.

The other point being that a lot that has been written and portrayed about the African-American community has not just been racist, but simply false. The Birth of The Nation film from 1918 is an excellent example of that. And then go to the movies starting in the 1930s or so featuring African-Americans were portrayed as servants to Caucasians. Or were seen as criminals that no man would ever dare let their daughters be anywhere near. That fact is left obvious even back then because all Americans were familiar with the movies and TV and all had access to them for the most part.

I think the whole point of African-American History Month is to correct many wrongs that were written about the community in the past. And not portray the African-American community as perfect, because no community is. But to give a more balance look at the community and to point out that this community has given a lot to America from day one and even before we officially became the United States. And to show that even though this community still has a lot of challenges in America, they are by far the most successful African community in the world. That has contributed a lot to America and then some.
Demonstrators Picketing Kress Company for Lunch Counter Discrimination

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

To me at least Black Power wasn’t one movement, but a larger movement with several different sub-divisions. You had the more socialist if not Marxist revolutionary Black Panthers on the Far-Left with their own militia. You had Malcolm X and his movement that was sort of in the middle. That was truly about freedom and individualism for the African-American community and for them to be free to live their own lives. And you had the more social democratic pacifist movement led by Martin Luther King and his organization as well. But all of these groups essentially had similar if not the same goals, but with different tactics in how to accomplish those goals.

All three of these groups wanted power for the entire African-American community. That would not longer be forced to live under poverty, racism and have to be second-class citizens to Caucasian-Americans. I think one of the tragedies of Malcolm X being murdered in 1965 is that he and his movement I believe would’ve been a bumper between the Black Panthers and the MLK group. And perhaps without the Malcolm X being murdered maybe we don’t see the race riots that we did in 1965 and 66. We’ll never know that, but he was moderating before he was murdered in 1965 and maybe we would’ve seen that.

Black Power for the most part wasn’t about having African-Americans throwing the Caucasian community out of power in the 1960s and overthrowing the U.S. Government. It was about empowering an entire community of Americans to be able to live in their own freedom as well. And no longer forced to live under anyone else’s authority. The Black Panthers might have had more extreme leftist goals of overthrowing and entire country. But generally speaking the people in Black Power movement was about empowering African-Americans. And only using violence when it was used against them.
Black Panthers

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

The 1960s was truly a revolution for American culture and politics. We go from a very conservative collectivist period from the 1940s and 50s to a period where all sorts of groups of Americans were standing up and demanding their freedom. And the freedom to live their own lives for the very first time in their lives. And from that sense at least the 1960s was a very positive time with so many new Americans now wanting and obtaining freedom over their own lives. And a bad time for the conservative establishment that wanted to keep things as is.

The 1960s you have the civil rights movement which was very positive. And not just for African-Americans, but for Latin-Americans, women of all races and ethnicities, as well as gays. And for Americans of all backgrounds now being able to live their own lives the way they want to. And no longer feeling the need or having to live the lives of their parents and grandparents. The 1960s you also have the anti-war movement which led to America finally seeing that the Vietnam War was wrong and that we couldn’t win it.

The negative aspects of the 1960s was of course the violence. We lost two great political leaders in John F. Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy. We lost two great civil rights leaders in Martin L. King and Malcolm X. The rise of crime in that decade, the rioting and division of that decade. Things fifty-years later we’re still going through and haven’t recovered from. But revolutions tend not to be all peaceful. There tends to be some casualties in revolutions and the 1960s was no exception to that.

We go from a very stagnant and status quo decade of the 1950s to a revolutionary decade of the 1960s. Where not a lot of new things seemed extreme, except to the establishment that again wanted to keep things as is. Because they benefited most from that America and also believed that was the way for all Americans to live. And if America had to do all over again I believe it would and that it would’ve needed to be done. Because of all the Americans who were denied freedom in America simply because of who they were.
The 1960s

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

This is one reason why I’m definitely a big fan of George Clooney, besides his great sense of humor and charm, but his intelligence and knowledge about the issues that he likes to film about. Ed Murrow and the Ed Murrow-Joe McCarthy battle in the 1950s over communism and fascism. Who knows Ed Murrow so well and this story so well and you see that in this interview and in the movie. And you also see how much he respected Ed Murrow and how big of a thug and fascist that Senator Joe McCarthy was in the 1950s. Even if Ann Coulter is never smart enough to see that.

Ed Murrow knew how dangerous Senator McCarthy was in the 1950s and represented everything that America is supposed to be against and something I believe a large majority if not most Americans are against, which is fascism. And this blog covers fascism from both the Far-Right and Far-Left because it hates fascism. People telling others what it means to be an American and a moral person. Or how we should talk about certain groups of people and who we should communicate with each other.

Ed Murrow and his See it Now team knew exactly what they were up against and that the person that they were up against. And the fact that Senator McCarthy was a member of Congress and could use his power as a Senator to try to punish CBS News and the broader CBS network with their licensing and fines and everything else. And CBS News of course knew this as well which is why they weren’t fully behind Murrow and Fred Friendly. But it believed it was a fight worth taking on for the future of speech and other freedoms that Americans tend to take for granted. And they were very skillful how they took on McCarthy.
Ed Murrow

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

If you are familiar with leftist publications like Salon, The Nation, The American Prospect, AlterNet, TruthOut and I’m sure I’ve left some other out and the Occupy Wall Street movement and what is left of it today, go back to the 1960s and you’ll see where the members of that movement come from today. Students For A Democratic Society, the counter-culture movement and the anti-war movement and even anti-capitalist and wealth movement of the 1960s are the parents and grandparents of the Occupy today.

They were called the New Left back and people with this really far-leftist mindset at least in America are still the New Left today. People who were not only against the Vietnam War which a lot of the country who was a lot more politically mainstream back then was also against. But they were against the liberal democratic establishment in general. Not the Democratic Party necessarily, but the liberal values that govern America then and today and what the country was founded on. Mostly as it related to our military, law enforcement and foreign policy, but also our economic and political systems.

The New Left coming of age in college in the 1960s decided they didn’t like America at least how the country was governed and founded. And put together a movement to not only get us out of the Vietnam War, which I would’ve been against back then as well as today. But they wanted to destroy our system and how our country is governed. And replace it with something a lot more social democratic, that is the democrats who were in this group. I mean if you look at Occupy today and then look at the New Left of the 1960s, they are the same people ideologically and culturally and believe in the same things.
The 1960s

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

The Kennedy’s had just been married by this point in 1953. John Kennedy was about halfway through his first term as a U.S. Senate and already contemplating running for President. And had even considered being Adlai Stephenson’s Vice Presidential nominee in 1956. And this is going to sound hard, but Jack Kennedy was politically smart enough to know that he wasn’t going to get elected President as a bachelor. Especially as a bachelor with a reputation as a playboy. That is where Jackie comes in to make it look like Jack has settled down with one women and ready to start a family. Not saying Jack didn’t love Jackie, but that was not his primary motive for marrying her. He wanted to run for and be elected President in 1960 and the way to do that back then and still today is at the very least be seen as a family man. With a wife and kids and be perceived as loving both.
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