Old School Video of the Week: Elton John – “I’m Still Standing”

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“Don’t you know I’m still standing better than I ever did. Looking like a true survivor, feeling like a little kid. I’m still standing after all this time. Picking up the pieces of my life without you on my mind…”

 

Elton JohnThe year was 1983 when legendary Elton John released “I’m Still Standing” off the album Two Low for Zero. This is one of my favorite tracks, because Elton is stating no matter the obstacles that have come your way, you still standing and you are indeed a true survivor. Filmed in France, Elton appears to be having a great time rocking his outrageous glasses on different takes. “I’m Still Standing” reached #12 on the U.S. Billboard charts.

 

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The Schomberg Presents: Michelle Alexander Discussing Her Book “The New Jim Crow”

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The New Jim Crow

“You have to face the fact that the whole problem is really the blacks. The key is to devise a system that recognizes this while not appearing to.””I mean (a War on Drugs) on marijuana that just tears the ass out of them.””We are going to hit the marijuana thing, and I want to hit it right square in the puss, I want to find a way of putting more on that.” “I want to hit it, against legalizing and all that sort of thing.””We need, and I use the word ‘all out war’, on all fronts… We have to attack on all fronts.” – President Richard Nixon

 

NEW YORK -I was fortunate enough to be present at the Schomberg in Harlem this past Wednesday – 1/19/14 (I took the day off for this, wouldn’t miss it for the world) to listen to Khalil Gibran Muhammad and Michelle Alexander speak about mass incarceration and Alexander’s book “The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness”. One of the things I noticed while my friend and I were in attendance was that the majority of the audience did not have young Black men present that were teens to their mid thirties. The issue of mass incarceration that are being discussed really is being implemented against young young Black men.

Of course, one has their skeptics on what we call The New Jim Crow. I used to be that person, always saying to myself if they stop selling drugs or robbing people they won’t get locked up for the rest of their lives. This was my ignorance until I decided to utilize my critical thinking skills and realize that the problem of mass incarceration is implemented in the criminal justice system by design. The implementation of drugs (especially crack) that took over our communities and the outsourcing of jobs, which were sent overseas had a part in creating the drug dealer. From interactions with police, the public defender that want their client to take a plea deal regardless of their innocence, to the judges and then to the correctional facilities who aren’t their to rehabilitate an offender, but to oppress them even further into the criminal justice system.

I remember when I first read The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, it changed my life and awaken consciousness that I never thought I had when it comes to social issues like the criminal justice system. Michelle Alexander’s hard work, to create a book of this magnitude has influenced me tremendously, to shift my views and attention to assist those who can’t help themselves in a criminal justice system that is bent on less rehabilitation, but more toward invisible punishment when that offender fulfills their obligation and serve their time.

Take a listen to the show, it was a very fulfilling event that I was fortunate enough to witness and shout out to my friend Doris who had the opportunity to ask a very riveting question that is plaguing the Black and Latino community. Lastly, I expect white people to say that if Black people stop committing crime they wouldn’t get locked up for so many years. For any Black or Latino that shares this view, I wonder if one of your righteous kids made a mistake, for example: possession of marijuana, or shoplift with their bad influence friends and are sentence harshly, would those same individuals be singing another tune – I think I know the answer to that…

-Ms Scripter

Just blogging for the masses, ya dig?

 

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Old School Video of the Week: Pebbles – “Giving You The Benefit”

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Always_Pebbles_albumThe year was 1990 when Pebbles released the song, “Giving You the Benefit” off her 2nd album entitled Always. “Giving You The Benefit” reached #1 on the R&B singles chart. Penned by both Babyface Edmonds and her then husband L.A. Reid, Pebbles continued to be relevant in the early part of the 90’s. Her relevancy faded after allegations were made by TLC that she robbed them and left them broke. A cloud of suspicion has always been placed over Pebbles during that time, and she had faded to obscurity. Pebble has since left the music industry, but her relevancy in a time period where R&B music was at it’s plateau will never be forgotten.

-Ms Scripter

Just blogging for the masses, ya dig?

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