As much as I seek to inspire others, here’s who inspire me:
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr:
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
“You must be the change you wish to see in the world..”
No other woman of the 20th century has taught women more about being aware of their own power and beauty or how they deserve to be treated by men.
James Brown, Muhammad Ali, Michael Jackson and the Jackson Five
As a little black boy growing up in the ghetto these public figures helped shape my integrity and self-respect. James Brown singing “Say It Loud – I’m Black and I’m Proud!” was a profound statement for me and I sang it like an anthem. Muhammad Ali was the first real-life black hero I realized I had – not something in a comic book. And he didn’t just have strength and a loud mouth – the man spoke sense! Wisdoms to live by.
The Jackson Five was just another ghetto boy’s dream come true – you had these kids from a rough background that had grabbed onto the “American Dream.” They were inspiring and their music was really good; their songs stand as classics today: “I Want You Back,” “The Love You Save,” “ABC,” “Dancing Machine” – all good stuff.
Michael Jackson himself was a “gift” like Michael Jordan, Mike Tyson, Thomas Edison, Bill Gates, Michelangelo, and Elon Musk. I was literally so in awe of Jackson’s talent I was content to slowly build my career as I watched the juggernaut that was Michael Jackson. I am glad I was in his time
Video: “They don’t care about us”
I am still reeling and perplexed about Robin Williams’ suicide. I’ve personally had two friends who committed suicide.
The idea that someone who is also such a “gift” to this world could not find his own place and balance in this world leaves me to think he must have bought into some BS about his self-worth. Maybe some playground bully or adult in his early life convinced him he’ll be nothing, no matter what he did. I can’t imagine anyone with any love for themselves being able to self-murder like that. Man, woman, child or beast – whoever spoke to him like that – he should have told them to go f— themselves.
(cover image courtesy Wikipedia)
But why should I tell you how great the man was? Let the man speak for himself!
Rest in peace, Chuck,
Hidden Figures is based on the book by Margot Lee Shetterly – the true story of female African American engineers and mathematicians that got America’s space program off the ground – literally – in the early years of the “space race” in the ’60s. This was at a time when “computer” was a job, not a machine, and a job these women did well in the face of Segregation – and though they earned the respect of their White co-workers, their efforts were effectively swept under the rug, until today.
This was also at a time when almost all the successful space missions were from the old Soviet Union; by the time Kennedy promised America would go to the Moon, the Soviets had already launched the first manned spacecraft into orbit, while the best Americans could do was send Alan Shepard on a brief fifteen-minute ride above the atmosphere. Real life heroines Katherine Johnson (played by Taraji P. Henson), Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monae) helped change that, by doing part of the mathematical “heavy lifting” that made John Glenn’s historic mission possible.
That’s as much as I want to get into this movie – I really don’t want to spoil it!. Whether it wins any Oscars™ or not (fingers crossed!) I’m really looking forward to seeing it myself.
This. Definitely This. This has to be passed.
Five years ago—and yes, it took that long to pass it—Congress passed the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act to offer Government assistance to 9/11 first responders suffering from health problems, including over 1100 people suffering with cancer.
Who’d have thought breathing powdered building would be hazardous to your health?
The Zadroga Act—named after an NYPD detective who died of respiratory illness contracted at Ground Zero—is due to expire next month, leaving up to 33,000 9/11 survivors left to their own resources to combat lifelong health consequences from working at Ground Zero. Stewart, surviving 9/11 first responders, and their supporters are calling on Congress to renew the Zadroga Act permanently, so people already suffering from and who will develop health problems from working at Ground Zero will have access to Federal help.
“I’m embarrassed,” Stewart says in the Guardian article. “I’m embarrassed for our country. I’m embarrassed for New York, I’m embarrassed that you, after serving so selflessly with such heroism, have to come down here and convince people to do what’s right for the illnesses and difficulties that you suffered because of your heroism and because of your selflessness.”
James Briordy, a retired marine engineer with the FDNY who now suffers from respiratory problems, warns “If this fund is not permanent then the sicknesses that are increasing now, the deaths from them are going to increase dramatically.”
It is believed since 9/11, at least 85 NYPD officers and 130 FDNY firefighters have died from illnesses brought on by breathing toxic dust raised when the Towers collapsed.
Guys, this one’s for you.
NEW! YORK!! CITY!!!