5 Truths About the Ferguson Grand Jury Decision

michael

The truth is….I don’t understand the Ferguson Grand Jury’s decision. I’m not surprised by it…I just don’t understand it. Granted, I’ve only just begun to go through the more than 5,000 pages of documents released, but I’m having a hard time understanding the following — when the threshold for the burden of proof is this low, how does a Grand Jury justify 12 rounds being fired at an unarmed kid?

The Truth is…I don’t understand a prosecutor who seems more like a defense attorney. Robert McCulloch blamed the media, social media, the Internet, Michael Brown and anyone else he could think of last night, but he never truly explained why officer Wilson fired 12 times at an unarmed kid.

The truth is…I don’t understand why they waited 6 hours to announce the decision, knowing full well it was NOT going to be received well. This is probably the most troubling truth…and the dumbest.

The truth is…I don’t understand what rioting and looting accomplishes. I don’t care for the decision either. But I’ll keep asking the question until someone can explain to me — how does damaging property, setting fires and looting stores IN YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD (or anyone else’s for that matter) honor a dead black boy?

 The truth is…When certain people already think you are nothing more than a lazy animal who is looking for a government handout from a black President…you only make them believe they are right when you act out.

I don’t really understand what is happening right now, but what I know is a black boy was shot and killed in Florida by a man who had no business following him, and that man was found to be innocent. I know Michael Brown stole some cigars, but I’m not sure why he was shot at 12 times by a police officer who for the moment, has been cleared of all wrong doing.

The first thing people like to say is this isn’t about race. To those who say that…I don’t think you’re stupid or insensitive. I just don’t think you have a clear sense of what you are talking about. If Michael Brown was a white young man, odds are GREATLY increased he is alive today. Does that make Officer Wilson a racist…no. It makes him human.

Not everyone is a racist.

Not all young black men are bad.

If we don’t all take a breath and get a handle on a situation that is spiraling out of control, all the progress that has been made the past 50 years will be for not. We need to have a frank discussion about race in this country…and it needs to start at home, with parents teaching their kids to respect themselves — pull up your damn pants and walk around like you have pride in yourself; respect for others — respect those who are older than you – black or white. Understand that when you do something wrong it’s on you and you have to bare the consequences. These are the basic principles. They are not rocket science or hard.

Finally, to Rev. Sharpton and all the other black leaders in the country – stop getting everyone riled up! We don’t need to hold protests and marches everytime a black youth or person is killed by the police. By all means, comfort the family. Call for justice and work towards making sure justice is served. But if you continue down this path where every time a black person is killed by police you hold a march and/or a rally days after the incident, before any evidence can be gathered and/or processed…you’re just adding fuel to a burning fire.

These are just the truths as I seem them.

I don’t believe them to be absolute.

But I do believe they have merit.

Do They Know It’s Christmas (2014)

band aid 30 art

I absolutely and firmly believe this “Christmas in November” thing has gotten WAY out of hand.

However, I just heard the Band Aid 30 remake of “Do They Know It’s Christmas,” and I’m in love! It’s a wonderful rework of Bob Geldof’s original, featuring the likes of some of today’s most popular artists including One Direction, Ed Sheeran, Rita Ora, Sam Smith, Ellie Goulding and Jessie Ware to some oldies from U2’s Bono (who took part in the original recording), Seal and the surprise of the century Sinead O’Connor. It would appear no photos of the Pope were damaged in the recording of the song…at least that we know of.

All the proceeds generated from this incredible reworked classic, will go to the fight against the Ebola epidemic currently plaguing West Africa.

Have a listen here…

…then go and purchase the download from here — iTunes or Amazon.

 

Ignorance is NOT Always Blissful…

ignorance

Last Wednesday evening I received the following Facebook message from someone not worthy of mentioning, “I knew you’d be all quiet today now that your boy got beat.”

I responded by unfriending his ignorant ass for two reasons.

First, you don’t have to respect me or my views. But I will not tolerate the blatant disrespect of the President of the United States. It’s beyond distasteful to refer to him as “boy” and says to me that your ignorance is beyond repair.

Second, last I checked, POTUS didn’t lose an election. Now I know in the big picture that’s a technicality, but while that may be the case, I don’t have to accept it as fact. Especially when you look at the entire big picture and realize the ridiculousness of the Republican “victories” on Election night.

In New York, a Congressman under a 20-count indictment who also threatened to kill a reporter on live TV, was reelected. In Kentucky, 52% of the people who voted for Mitch McConnell said in exit polls that they don’t even like him. Oh, and there is also the fact that his State is one of the first true “Obamacare” success stories, a fact he continues to ignore. But I digress. In Iowa, voters elected a woman believes she is going to Washington to be a “pig castrator.”

I would love to laugh. Trust me. Nothing would give me more pleasure than to laugh at these people because they truly are a bad joke. But I can’t laugh, because in the end…the joke is on us.

The Speaker of the House is already talking about repealing ‘Obamacare’ despite the fact that while flawed, it has been successful. And they still have nothing to replace it with. So essentially, they plan to keep their ridiculous pitiful and spiteful campaign to destroy the country in hopes of making POTUS look bad.

So yes, Tuesday night’s election results were disappointing, but not surprising. And while it’s true, I haven’t posted anything about it until now, lets be clear, it wasn’t because I was sad or depressed. I’m those things everyday I hear people speak or read their Facebook posts and Tweets, which only confirm that they repeat the inaccurate things they hear and accept for fact. So as far as I’m concerned, Tuesday was just another day that ends in “Y.”

And let’s not fool ourselves. There’s a reason Republicans never stay in power for long. The poor things just can help themselves.

More to come….

Please…vote with intelligence tomorrow!

vote

The only thing worse than a person who doesn’t exercise their right to vote…is an uneducated voter.

I can’t say this any plainer than this…if Republicans somehow manage to take control of the Senate tomorrow, the people who put them there will be to blame for this country’s downward spiral.

To reward this party for it’s sad and spiteful actions of the past two years are not only idiotic and childish, but downright selfish.

Maybe you don’t like the President. Maybe you don’t like where you think the country is headed. But instead of believing ridiculous campaign ads that have taken a new low this year, and believe me…that’s a feat given the last few years, how about doing some real research before casting your vote tomorrow. What could it hurt? Imagine going into a voting booth fresh with knowledge and facts other than garbage and lies.

The fact of the matter is the country is still struggling. While the stock market is thriving and unemployment continues to fall, there are millions of citizens still struggling. Before placing all of the blame on the President of the United States, ask yourself this simple question…what have Republicans done in the past two years to make things better? What proposals have they put forward to create jobs and stimulate the economy further? When you realize the answer to that question is nothing…ask yourself this question – how is a Republican controlled Senate going to be any different/better than what we have now?

The sad fact is…it’s not. In the past two years, Republicans have continued their assault on “Obamacare” which, despite the many flaws in the bill, has helped millions of Americans receive the heath benefits they were previously denied. Besides giving speeches and appearing frequently on Sunday morning talk shows, Republicans did nothing to fix the border crisis. Republicans have yet….YET…to put forth a jobs creation bill. I could go on and on and on, but I’m not writing simply to bash Republicans.

The Democrats in Congress haven’t been all that better. Granted, they have no say/power to get anything done in the House, and with the masters of the filibuster, holding court in the Senate, there isn’t much they have been able to do. However, instead of baring down and working hard to pass any type of legislation, they have instead focused on retaining their control of the Senate. Is this worthy of being rewarded. NO!

So what am I asking of you…my loyal and intelligent readers? Nothing more than I’ve asked of you in the past…vote with intelligence.

I will not tell you who to vote for. That is a decision that is yours and yours alone. But when you enter the voting booth tomorrow, consider these five important factors when casting your votes…

1. Is this person worthy? Will he/she uphold the laws of the Constitution? And fight for them?

2. Does this person believe in the rights of others..equally, be it women, gays, minorities, etc.

3. Does this person stand for something or are they just a party hack?

4. Will this person stand up to those who govern based on a book other than the Constitution?

5. Is this person honest?

Your vote matters, and casting it as an educated voter is one of the most important jobs/responsibility as an American citizen. Please don’t vote out of some misguided anger. Educate yourself and others. Maybe this means you will end up voting Republican…and while I strongly disagree, as long as you’re doing it because you believe it’s the right choice, then go forth. We’ll have much to debate for the next two years. Just make sure you’re doing so because you truly believe it will help the country move forward.

There are many races tomorrow that mean a great deal from the Governors races in Texas, Florida, Connecticut, Wisconsin, Georgia and Pennsylvania to Senate races in Kentucky, Georgia, Louisiana, New Hampshire, Virginia, Kansas, North Carolina and Arkansas. Now in some cases, the fact that some of these are up for grabs like Georgia speak to the fact that people not only paying attention, but are getting tired of politics as usual. In others, like the Connecticut Governors race, where the Governor is being punished for enacting tougher gun control laws in the wake of the massacre that killed 20 school kids, is just beyond words. If you watch the ads being run against Governor Malloy, you’d think Connecticut was in the dumps economically. It’s true, the State with the highest per capita income of all 50 States has seen better days, but to hear Tom Foley talk, the State is on the verge of bankruptcy. That is just not true.

For those of you in Staten Island, NY casting a vote for Michael Grimm tomorrow…shame on you. The man is not worthy of being a United States Congressman, hell he’s barely worthy of being called a human being. But from the looks of it, he’s going to be rewarded another term. One he won’t complete due to the legal troubles that will boost him from Congress by the end of next year if not sooner. But don’t let that stop you from wasting your vote on him.

With no clear contender for the White House in 2016 (I’m sorry fellow Dems…as much as I love Hillary and will support her, NO ONE is a lock, until they take the oath of office on January 20, 2017), tomorrow’s election will not change that fact. Nor should it. We have a great many things that need to be addressed in the hear and now. Please…focus on that.

Vote for people who you believe will roll up their sleeves and get to work doing the people’s business.

Thank you.

CJ’s [Gobble Gobble] iphone Playlist – November 2014

Greetings readers of the Blog! Close your mouths…yes the list is a few days early!

I can honestly say this month’s playlist was a labor of love. It started with The Zombies, Lilly Wood & The Prick and Jessie Ware, and grew from there.

Newbies this month include Prayer in C, Say You Love Me, eez-eh, The Hideaway Coast, When You Were Mine and a cover that is so mind blowing fantastic, it was the obvious choice for “Spotlight Song” of the month — Lo-Fang’s You’re the One That I Want.

Filling out the rest of the list are some of this year’s odds on favorites to appear on the year-end countdown including Habits (Stay High), I Choose You and Sam Smith’s I’m Not the Only One, some New Wave goodness from Erasure, Duran Duran and The Pet Shop Boys and finally some straight up classics including Time of the Season, Finally, Nothing Compares 2 U, Don’t Stop Me Now and Tell Her About It.

Spotify users are welcome to subscribe to or listen to the November playlist by clicking here – November 2014.

It’s hard to believe it, but there’s only one more playlist until the year-end countdown. Where does the time go?? The selection process has already begun, and in the spirit of a few suggestions and an outright challenge, I am determined to do a true Top 10 Songs of 2014. There may be an honorable mention or two, but we’re gunning for a magic 10, so keep the suggestions coming in!

As always, thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts with me. It’s much appreciated!!

Dance in the Dark (The Finally remix) – Lady Gaga

Finally – Ce Ce Peniston

Prayer in C (Robin Schultz radio edit) Lilly Wood & The Prick

Time of the Season – The Zombies

Yellow Flicker Beat – Lorde

I’m Not the Only One – Sam Smith

Say You Love Me – Jessie Ware

I Don’t Feel Like Dancing – Scissor Sister

Don’t Stop Me Now – Queen

Eez-eh  – Kasabian

Don’t – Ed Sheeran

Rather Be – Clean Bandits ft. Jess Glynne

I Choose You – Sara Bareilles

Habits (Stay High) – Tove Lo

Nothing Compares 2 U – Sinead O’Connor

All of Me – John Legend

The Hideaway Coast (Lana Del Ray v. Kiesza, v. ZHU v. Sam Smith) – Robin Skouteris

You’re the One That I Want – Lo-Fang*

**Spotlight Song of the Month**


You’re the One That I Want – John Travolta & Olivia Newton-John

Tell Her About It – Billy Joel

Locked Out of Heaven – Bruno Mars

Take a Chance on Me – Erasure

When You Were Mine – Night Terrors of 1927

True Faith – New Order

All About That Bass – Meghan Trainor

Bang Bang – Jessie J, Ariana Grande, Nikki Minaj

Call Me Up – St. Lucia

It’s A Sin – Pet Shop Boys

The Reflex – Duran Duran

Freedom ’90 – George Michael

Never Let Me Down – Depeche Mode

Enjoy the Silence – Depeche Mode

A Little Respect – Erasure