Funeral Notes–Aretha and McCain: One Question, Three Comments

Yep, I watched Aretha ALL DAY Friday on the livestream. Even after-the-fact caught Meghan McCain’s tribute to her daddy yesterday.

It was a weird weekend for funeral eulogy. W’s McCain eulogy was better than Obama’s! (And, thankfully, much shorter!) I would have never have seen that coming!

Okay, I see most of the news coverage about Queen Ree-Ree is about how the bishop enjoyed himself a little too much with Ariana Grande, who, telling the truth, was wearing a little too little for church. ūüôā¬† And no, Bill Clinton did not keep his eyes in his head, but, c’mon, everyone saw that coming. ūüôā ) But I had one question and three comments:

  1. Why didn’t Minister Louis Farrkahan speak, or get to speak, at the funeral? All the other dignities–former President Bill Clinton, Rev. Al Sharpton, Michael Eric Dyson, and Rev. Jesse Jackson–sat with him, and they all spoke. Also: I’m glad some people noticed what I did–that he was being constantly cropped out of the shots, both photo and live video. He sat up there a long time to get gipped like that in public, if that’s what indeed happened. Whether he got cut from the pulpit or not, at least it seemed that he was enjoying himself. [OCT. 22 UPDATE: Richard Prince tells me today he didn’t want to speak, but he wanted to show up to thank the Queen for what she did for him in 1972 (!)].
  2. I think I was in the kitchen when U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters gave the Wakandan salute. Just found out about that while researching this post.
  3. The MSM are focused on Dyson’s slamming of Trump. But I appreciated his shade on Obama. Without referring to him by name, Dyson said “some” (meaning you, Daddy-O) were too afraid to come and stand in front of the entire Black community –which,¬†FOX News’ confusion be damned, includes Farrakhan! (Sharpton read a letter from 44.)¬†I’m not the biggest Dyson fan by a looong shot, but I appreciated that!
  4. As far as John McCain is concerned, well……let’s just say that if Angela Davis–an American hero!–becomes an Ancestor before me, I look forward to hearing tributes to her courage from the Right, Center and Center-Left (liberals). ūüôā


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My Latest Book Review, On Michael Eric Dyson’s New Book On RFK and James Baldwin…….

…….is here.

 

The New, New Black Public Intellectuals (Or, The Digger-ati ;))

Black Twitter

Leave it to Michael Eric Dyson to write this. (I remember he did something similar almost 20 years ago in his book “Race Rules.” )

It’s an interesting list. It would be a bit more interesting if it included people I met¬†over the years, like Jared Ball and Rosa Clemente. They are no strangers to public intellectual work, but, alas,¬†they don’t color within the lines.

But then again, looking at the older generation:

* Herb Boyd has written about 25 books in the 30 years since he left academe AND he has TWO National Association of Black Journalists awards (one with Dyson!), including a NABJ Hall of Fame award: when does HE get picked as a starter on the schoolyard? When he turns 80 in three years? 
* Another friend and mentor, Don Rojas, should be writing and teaching right now about the Grenada revolution.
* A Black radio broadcaster I grew up listening to, ¬†Imhotep Gary Byrd, is holding on in the 21st century, incredibly,¬†with a free two-hour show on WBAI-FM on Friday nights and a WLIB/WBLS two-hour simulcast on Sunday nights. He will turn 70 (?) in 2019: when does HE get a DAMN¬†NATIONAL show in either/both broadast mediums!?!? Almost 30 (!) years ago in¬†Newark, when I had more hair and teeth than I have now :), I used to listen to the Rev. Al Sharpton on Byrd’s WLIB show, so¬†how can Sharpton get TWO national Black radio shows and ONE national white TV show and Byrd, with almost 50 years in the game as a living legend,¬†can’t get ONE of these?!? (Even the guy at The New York Daily News who used to cover Byrd and the rest of New York City’s Black radio fairly just got canned. :))
* And, if we can broaden out to Latinos here,¬†will Amy Goodman hire Juan Gonzalez as a REAL “Democracy Now!”¬†co-host once The slow-death¬†News lets him go? How much more award-winning (I still remember his “stolen” Pulitzer for 911 ash) investigative journalism does his 66-year-old, clearly-spends-all-his-spare-time-writing-serious-history-books¬†butt has do? When he’s cut, will¬†he get the $200,000 a year New York City professorships others of less stature, ability and accomplishment get?

I just remember that Manning Marable and Earl Ofari Hutchinson were among those who started this “post-Civil Rights Movement Black public intellectual” thing 40 years ago on the Op-Ed pages of Black newspapers¬†that only a few give¬†a¬†crap about now. Time is not the only thing that keeps on slipping into the future.

So What Should We Do With Cornel West?

Cornel West

Nothing. But read him, argue with him, think about what he is saying. Accept him. Dismiss him.¬†Say he’s lost it.¬†Think him a hater. Miss him when he becomes an Ancestor, because he stands up and talks loud when others are silent (like when Mumia Abu-Jamal was dying), and gets cuffed with others just talk.

My Root Article On Black Leader/Luminary Hate History……..

Farrakahan

MuhammadSpeaks2

…..is here.