Archive for the 'Race' Category


Great Moments in Black History: #9

The Nicholas Brothers in “Stormy Weather”

This is the dance sequence that Fred Astaire famously called, “the greatest dance number ever filmed.” I tore my ACL just watching this. In my mind, Harold and Fayard Nicholas are far and away the greatest dancers to ever walk the earth; with Fred “Rerun” Berry a distant third.

Bonus comedy: Here’s Harold hamming it up with Bill Cosby and Sydney Poitier thirty years later in “Uptown Saturday Night.”


Great Moments in Black History: #7

Miscegenation FTW!

I celebrate the night that Tommy and Gail made sweet, sweet love both as a fellow race-mixer and a basketball fan. I’m usually not one to believe in omens, but when he scored his first ever NBA points on a one-handed, fast break alley-oop, you had to know he was going to live up to the hype. I, for one, welcome our mulatto overlords.


Great Moments in Black History: #3

Shirley Chisholm declares presidential bid, January 25, 1972

When I wear my “Shirley Chisholm for President” button, I get two reactions. The first–usually from someone over the age of 50–is an enthusiastic smile before they ask where I got it.  The second, more common reaction is, “Who’s Shirley Chisholm?” After I sigh and hang my head briefly–especially when asked that by a person of color–I explain that she was the first Black woman elected to Congress, and the first Black person to seek a major-party’s Presidential nomination.

I could tell you about how kick-ass Ms. Shirley was, but instead I’ll direct you to Chisholm ’72: Unbought & Unbossed, so you can see for yourself.


Great moments in Black History #1

In celebration of Black History Month–sorry, Morgan Freeman–I will be posting 28 of the greatest moments in this history of my people.  First up,  Malice in the Palace.  No, that’s not a typo.  No, I’m not being ironic.  This is legitimately a great moment in Black History because from now until the end of time white people will not throw shit at NBA players or set foot on an NBA court in anything other than a celebratory fashion.




Ladies and gentlemen, North Carolina


Electric Purgatory: The Fate of the Black Rocker

This documentary film from Raymond Gayle examines “the struggles of the black rock musician and the stigma they face in the black community and the music industry.”  It features tons of great performance footage and interviews with journalists and musicians like Angelo Moore of Fishbone, Vernon Reid of In Living Color, and Cody ChesnuTT. Although the film is a bit rough around the edges, it’s got a lot of heart and certainly tackles an interesting and timely subject.  The success of bands like TV on the Radio (one white guy) and Bloc Party (fronted by a black guy) might signal a shift toward an acceptance of more rockers of color.  Watch it here, or by all means go buy a copy.

And here’s the Saturday Night Live performance that first made me a Fishbone fan.

Fishbone – Everyday Sunshine Live at Saturday Night Live

daniele | MySpace Video


Do you like college and/or pro basketball?

Do you also like logic?  If you answered yes, you’d do well to read this piece by Dan Wetzel of Yahoo Sports about the recent allegations that current Chicago Bull and former Memphis Tiger Derrick Rose may have had someone take his SAT for him and the idiocy of the NBA’s age limit.

If Rose sang or danced or wrote computer code, even if he hit forehands or curveballs and not free throws, his acumen at standardized questions concerning probability, diction and critical reading wouldn’t matter.

They do in basketball because NBA commissioner David Stern wanted to control long-term labor costs and use college ball to market his young stars. In 2005, his league began requiring American players (but not Europeans) to be at least one year out of high school to be drafted.

That essentially sends them to college ball, where outdated and hypocritical amateurism and academic rules exist not because they have any moral basis, but so the NCAA can avoid billions in local and federal taxes.

Isn’t it amazing how much clearer the picture gets when you follow the money?


De LA + Nike

Sorry, Naomi. You know I ride with you on the globalization tip. But…De La!

Nike Sport Music – De La Soul from nikedelasoul on Vimeo.


LA Times: For her an uproar, for him a whisper

They were killed on the same day, in the same way. One of the deaths captured the attention of a city and spurred the Los Angeles Police Department into overdrive. The other slipped by unnoticed, leaving a lone detective with little more to go on than hope.

Some stories don’t even need commentary.


The New York Times thinks all Black people look alike

Well, not all Black people.  But this is a perfect example of why the stereotype still persists.  Writing about the new movie Obsessed, Stephen Holden said the following:

The movie’s most disturbing aspect, of which the filmmakers could not have been unaware, is the physical resemblance between Mr. Elba and Ms. Larter to O. J. and Nicole Brown Simpson.   It lends “Obsessed” a distasteful taint of exploitation.

The problem, of course, is the fact that Idris Elba and O.J. Simpson look nothing alike, save for one obvious similarity. They have different shaped heads, different facial structures, different features, different skin tones.  They just both happen to be Black.  And Ali Larter and Nicole Brown Simpson just both happen to be blond white women.

The only thing distasteful here is how the sight of a Black man on screen with a white woman still makes white people crazy enough to write stupid shit like this.

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