Saturday, February 26, 2005


Supporters of keeping the monument on the Capitol grounds say the traditions of Western law are rooted in the Ten Commandments. America can't scrub the role of religion from its history, said Kelly Shackelford of the Liberty Legal Institute, which defends religious freedoms and First Amendment rights and filed briefs in support of keeping the monument.

"What they're really advocating on the other side is a religious cleansing from our history," Shackelford said. "It should be treated with respect as our part of history, not some new form of pornography that has to be banned from our public arena." -Taken from the article; Top Court to Weigh Ten Commandments.

I couldn't agree more that "America can't scrub the role of religion from its history" and it would be insane to do so. After all, it is American history and it is valid. But wait. Why does the connection between America's religious history and how that history is dissected and interpreted only valid when the proponents of the religion set the standards? If the religion is not presented in a favorable light, or not by "agreed upon" interpretations by those who control the religion, trouble. (I wonder if those religious folks can accept or seriously entertain the possibility that there may be a historical connection between the 42 tenets of Maat and the Ten Commandments?)

I would think anything as powerful and so well promoted as the only way to live a life, should be examined from all angles without repercussions. If religion is truth based, then there should be nothing to hide and scrunity should be encouraged, after all isn't one's religion that important? There should be no need for advertisements of the religious faith blasted all over the country, it should stand on its own merits. For those who believe, it is the truth and truth has a way of finding its way to the surface, one way or the other.

I often wonder if those pious people among the theocracy that promote, "the only way to live is their way to live" and what they believe, would be so inclined to just be silent and let their truth do the work? By this time everyone on the planet knows their story. I wonder if they will ever stop trying to acquire political power/clout, media control, and the White House to silence or intimidate opposing views? Can they forget or ignore the torments by the religious zealots like, the 250 years of the Crusades, The Inquisitions, The Salem Witch Hunts, etc., not to mention other atrocities done in the name of God, like, the taking of the Western Hemisphere from Indigenous Peoples and the slave trade.

Now if they could do this, and their views survive, then there very well may be something to what they believe.

Thursday, February 24, 2005


As a student of history and also a non-white citizen of the United States, I have learned to be extra cautious when the U.S. takes an interest in non-white peoples. Recently, I read in the Associated Press that more Africans are arriving in the U.S. today than during the Middle Passage. Well, I found that very interesting. Again, my knowing the history of the African slave trade, the Antebellum, Jim Crow, Segregation and the constant discrimination and isolation, even into contemporary times, would not only make me wonder, but an Einstein too.

The most striking contradiction is that this influx of “new” Blacks coincided with the massive incarceration of the Blacks already here. When I thought about this, I of course imagined the most sinister of plots. It was like the only thing they thought could be done with the “garbage” they created, whether “criminal or dissident,” was to discard it in the trash bins of society’s jails or isolation boxes. Then, they could start with Blacks who have no history of U.S. maltreatments, enslavements or debasements. Therefore they could keep their insidious history hidden from themselves and the world.

I must give credit to the majority group in the U.S. They know how to plan for the future and they know how to apply lessons learned from experience. For example, when I lived in California and then in Arizona, I found that many Mexican Americans voted to keep those “immigrants” Mexicans from crossing the border. It seems that those Mexicans who already had theirs in the U.S. didn’t want any competition from the new arrivals for the crumbs.

One consequence could be that Africans (Americans) already in America will resist the new arrivals because they feel their crumb pile threatened. They could feel they may lose some “points” from all their past suffering in this country. This may create friction between the two Africans. The majority culture may favor the new arrivals.

A more devious consequence has to do with reparations. Once the “new” arrivals have been assimilated in the country, the white majority will have a strong “Black” voice that can yell loud and clear, “We blacks don’t deserve reparations,” and by this time the new arrivals will be legitimate African-Americans. This ploy can diminish the sting of past enslavement, dilute the call for reparations, and place in the forefront a number of Blacks who can soothe white guilt thereby supporting their hypocrisy.

In my mind the final benefit for whites would be the new arrivals will demonstrate less anger toward the majority community. After placing most of the contemporary “angry” blacks in prisons, drug invested communities, and suicidal-homicidal situations, whites know that there is a good chance they will disappear within a few generations. Concomitantly, they don’t have to worry about the ten percent black “intelligentsia” because they have mortgages. The new arrivals can be the replacements players for the now dwindling ninety-percent.

When I read back through this I can understand why I made my opening statements. See, the new arrivals more than likely will eliminate much of the need for paranoia in today's Black community to.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Intelligent Design?

I read in the Tucson Weekly an article entitled, “Evolution Revolution,” by Deidre Pike. What I got out of the article was there is yet another challenge to evolution and the Christian fundamentalist would like to have this idea of intelligent design taught as part of a school’s science curriculum.

When I read the article, my first thought was, what is the difference between this idea of the universe being created by an intelligent designer and it being created by the biblical God? From what I understand as the difference, the intelligent design idea, as Dembski expressed, “[Is that] the search for a designer goes deeper than science-and involves the way humans view the world.”

Ok, sort of, but do all humans on the planet view the world as being created by a God or an intelligent designer? I think not, but again, this type of myopic thinking could be cultural arrogance or ignorance. But with my very limited knowledge, let me try examining this even further. When one studies evolution there is no “search” as Dembski theorized for phenomenon, and science has not suggested that the earth, and its inhabitants, “human beings, have any real significance in the universe. So does it really matter how “humans see the world?” But just open your eyes and the universe is laid before you. One sees trees, rocks, clouds, stars, major galaxies, millions of phenomena with a plethora of proof the natural world exists, but not one single piece of proof, except in the minds of humans, that some intelligent designer created it.

If I were a person who needed to subdue and control Nature like some on the planet think they must do, then I think I would be more apt to think in terms of an “intelligent designer.” If Nature is the force and process that produce and control all the phenomena of the material world, and I would add “spiritual world,” as a human being who thrived on power, dominance and resource control, I would feel powerless in the wake of Nature because I couldn’t see myself in control. I would just be an actor with these unknown natural forces directing me. I find myself fearing there is no “logical” human order to phenomena, but needing an escapegoat for my destructive behavior towards Nature. What better scapegoat then using this intelligent designer?

How do I overcome this feeling of powerlessness? I make the director-designer a thinking entity. Then within the world view of those particular destructive humans, order and logic would be restored. There is now a point of reference. Since we know humans are able to do what we define as thinking, then this Creator, director or designer, must have human qualities. If this designer has human qualities than perhaps one day humans with a certain world view can be a director or a designer, with no bounds. This world view would allow those who believe in a thinking, logical, intelligent designer, feel more comfortable because they are not at the mercy of forces they know nothing about or can’t control.

Karl Marx once said that religion is the opium of the masses. I would say religion is just a tool to explain why the masses must be controlled. The masses can understand a thinking creator or designer, but would feel hopeless in a destructive world such as ours with only natural forces as their guide. After all who can trust Nature? Contrarily, if the masses could understand that these natural forces have always been their guide, even before the advent of religion, then the theocracy and their explanations would be useless. Again enter the intelligent designer.

Christian fundamentalist ideology has a deep seeded need to express itself, even in a limited manner. Their ideology must be accepted or it has grave social and psychological implications for those who "believe." Since the biblical story is now pretty much ineffective, intelligent design lets them keep what they consider power and legitimacy, it becomes their viable alternative. I can think of no better creation story then one that most humans can share some common ground with, yet still have no requirement for truth. That's the intelligent design theory. There’s not one human on the planet that couldn't understand a thinking and creating designer. But how does our insignificant position in the universe justify that thoughts through design or whatever, as perceived and expressed by humans, must lead to some intelligent designer creatating the universe?

From The Talk.Origins Archives:
“Evolutionists have successfully refuted the usual argument for design that is grounded on the intricacy of biological life. They have convincingly demonstrated, to any rational person, that complexity sufficient for life could readily have emerged naturally in the primeval chemical stew. However, the processes of biological evolution on earth still depended on the pre-existence, billions of years ago, of the particles and "laws" of physics.
For example, consider the calculation by astronomer Fred Hoyle, often referred to by creationists, that the odds against DNA assembling by chance are 1040,000 to one (Hoyle, 1981). This is true, but highly misleading. DNA did not assemble purely by chance. It assembled by a combination of chance and the laws of physics.
Without the laws of physics as we know them, life on earth as we know it would not have evolved in the short span of six billion years. The nuclear force was needed to bind protons and neutrons in the nuclei of atoms; electromagnetism was needed to keep atoms and molecules together; and gravity was needed to keep the resulting ingredients for life stuck to the surface of the earth.
These forces must have been in operation within seconds of the start of the big bang, 10-15 billion years ago, to allow for the formation of protons and neutrons out of quarks and their storage in stable hydrogen and deuterium atoms. Free neutrons disintegrate in minutes. To be able to hang around for billions of years so that they could later join with protons in making chemical elements in stars, neutrons had to be bound in deuterons and other light nuclei where energetics prevented their decay.
Gravity was needed to gather atoms together into stars and to compress stellar cores, raising the core temperatures to tens of millions of degrees. These high temperatures made nuclear reactions possible, and over billions of years the elements of the chemical periodic table were synthesized as the by-product.”

I’m sure the intelligent design theory is just another smoke screen for biblical creationism. To the evolutionist I say, what if what we see (universe) has always been, no beginning and no end? After all isn't time a human construct? What if the universe is being "recycled" through contraction (gravity) and expansion (nuclear force-big band)? Circularity and evolutionary. What if to understand creation humans must transfer it into human thought as needing a creator or an intelligent designer? Wouldn't that make humans the intelligent designer?

Saturday, February 12, 2005


Yesterday I was walking down the street and I saw two quails eating some bread crumbs someone had left for them. I didn’t want to frighten them so I took the long way around. But when I came parallel to their eating spot, one bird stopped eating and ran towards me like a true avian trooper while the other didn’t miss a crumb. I thought this brave guardian must be the male.

Then as usual I started relating this experience with other animal behavior on the planet. I saw that this behavior was not too different from the human animal and his ideas about protecting the female and by extension, the family. Of course I had to put this into the context of cultural behaviors. My epiphany brought me to my own past. I don’t remember any of the men, father, uncles, family friends, really working. They had menial jobs like driving taxis, janitorial work and numbers running, after all this was in the early 1950’s, but nothing considered, “professional.” Looking back, I wondered how their females felt. I got a glimpse of this watching my avian friends.

The basic function of the man in a patriarchal society is to protect those who depend on him for said protection. No Black man then or now is allowed to fully fulfill this basic function whether he is a “professional” or a businessman. Even the successful black businessman is not immune because he has some type of bank note from a white banker and must show some caution, although not as much as the working professional.

So where does that leave the black female who just wants to have her and her child eat while their back is being protected? I would say “loving,” but with one foot out the door.

There are so many forces that come into play when a black man wants to protect his partner. There is always the threat that the white establishment will tire of him and his income will become poverty level. There is the chance that he is under so much pressure to be a non-entity in the outside world, that he takes this frustration out on his family. Then there is the chance that he internalizes his lack to express his manhood, making the female either no longer tolerating his yielding disposition, thereby losing respect, however still needing to eat, or; she finds other avenues of escapism, but the end result is the familiar bonds dissolve.

“One wonders how long a man can maintain enthusiasm for thrift, diligence,
and hard work when the rewards so earned are denied and when the goods so
earned are stolen.”-Black Rage

How can the black female feel secure with the black man? I would say this is a near impossible situation for the long term under present conditions. Factor in that today’s relationships also cross “racial” and “gender” boundaries, that condition makes black male-female situations more acute. All this is then packaged into the idea of a “progressive” society further leaving the black female’s back exposed to many abstract dangers. Subsequently, when she does eat, she eats a ton because there’s no telling when the knife of white supremacy will be thrust into her because her natural mate is able to continuously watch her back safely. To this I say, too bad we aren't quails.