Friday, February 15, 2008

A Little Softer Around The Edges

The little guy was whipped up on sugar yesterday and loving love day. Today, I'm a little slower. Tired from too much sugar. Looking around, the world feels just a tad bit softer around the edges.

Black Delegates are shifting over to Obama. According to the article
Super-D Shift: John Lewis to cast DNC Vote For Obama, Georgia Congressman John Lewis is going to do what is right by democracy. And it seems like he is leading a shift towards consciousness amongst othe Black politicians. A new day is coming? Today, yes, it feels like it.

In spite of the fact John Lewis still endorses and supports Hilary, this former friend and colleague of King will vote as his constituency wants him to and not as he damn well pleases. Imagine!

"In recent days, there is a sense of movement and a sense of spirit," explained Lewis, whose influence among African-American House members and many of their white liberal colleagues is substantial. "Something is happening in America and people are prepared and ready to make that great leap."

The article shows that other politicians have been doing the same thing.

"In Wisconsin this week, Congressman Ron Kind announced that he would cast his superdelegate vote for the candidate who wins his 3rd district in the February 19 election.

After being lobbied aggressively by both the Clinton and Obama camps, Kind said, "I'm going to keep faith with the voters and respect their choice."

If this keep-faith-with-the-voters standard takes hold, it will turn up the heat on a number of key Clinton backers. For instance, New York Congressmen Edolphus Towns and Gregory Meeks represent districts that voted solidly for Obama, as does New York Congressman Yvette Clarke. "

I think politicians are beginning to understand that people are fed up with how things are currently being done. And if they don't pro-activily keep faith with us, the streets might just fl up with people screaming for election reform...or worse.

"Let the man go where he is loved." Indeed! I shook my head reading this article. I am sad about the state of affairs in Africa. But, the below story comes as no surprise to me. Many of the nations of Africa are used to dictators, corruption, conniving and cruelty. So - George W. must look like a paragon of virtue. Everyone - regardless of how evil or small minded - needs at least one pace in the world where they are loved.

I found the below article over at The Root today. The image and caption grabed me immediately.
Bush's Liberian Lovefest

Feb. 15, 2008--President George W. Bush is off on a visit to Africa. He'll be zipping through Benin, Tanzania, Rwanda, Ghana and Liberia in less than a week. Some may wonder why, after visiting Africa only once before during his long (interminable) presidency, in 2003, Bush has decided at this late date to return his attention, albeit briefly, to The Continent.

Well, I think I've got an answer: Bush is looking for his next country to run. And he thinks he's found it in Liberia.

If you think about it, it even makes a certain poetic sense. The two nations are vastly different, clearly, but they share some common threads. The United States was founded on slavery; Liberia was founded by black Americans fleeing slavery. The United States has a three-pronged system of government, and so does Liberia (modeled upon the American version). The United States has a flag of red and white stripes with some stars in the blue corner, and so does Liberia (one star, not 50).

Plus – and here's the deal-sealer – they love Bush in Liberia. Here at home the president enjoys, at latest measure by The Washington Post, a 32 percent approval rating. That means some 66 percent of the country disapproves of him and everything he does, while the remaining folks can't be bothered to answer or just don't care.

But Liberians, by and large, love George Bush. In Liberia our president is a rock star. When I was there last August I could not find a single Liberian who had anything negative to say about the man. Not that I tried per se. But, you know.

Abu, who drove me through the pitted streets of Monrovia and showed me the palaces which various despots built, declared Bush a hero to the Liberian folks.

"You mean George Bush?" I asked. Just to clarify.
"He is a great, great man," Abu said.
"George W. Bush?"
"We honor him."
"The president of the United States?"
"He is the most powerful man in the world," Abu went on, which was not unreasonable. "When he said to Charles Taylor, 'It's time to go,' Taylor went. He saved us more bloodshed."

Well. Hard to argue with that. It is certainly true that in July 2003, on the eve of his first trip ever to Africa, Bush said not once but twice that Taylor must stop clinging to power and leave war-ravaged Liberia. It is equally true that without Bush's forceful statement, Taylor, a despot for the ages, might well have lingered even more.

Of course, it is equally true that by the time Bush made his remarks, tens of thousands of Liberians had been brutalized and slaughtered. By the time he made the call, the people of Liberia had been begging for U.S. intervention for months. By the time he made the call, the grieving, exhausted, angry citizens of Monrovia had piled their dead outside the gates of the American embassy in protest of the United States' slowness to get involved.

Nonetheless, the people of Liberia, by and large, like George Bush. Let the man go where he is loved.

Kim McLarin is the author of "Jump at the Sun."

So - yes - the world seems a bit softer around the edges today.

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