Friday, December 31, 2010

Michael Douglas: First African-American Chief Justice of the Nevada Supreme Court

Michael Douglas will become the first African-American chief justice of the Nevada Supreme Court effective with the new year.

On the Nevada high court, chief justice is a rotating position among the justices.

Douglas, 62, will take the administrative leadership of the court during what is expected to be a contentious 2011 legislative session. He succeeds Ron Parraguirre, who was chief justice through 2010.

He served as a district judge in Clark County from 1996-2004 when he was named to the Supreme Court. He has won election to the high court twice since.

“With the budget cuts the courts have already endured, it is increasingly difficult to fulfill our constitutional role,” said Douglas. “Certainly we acknowledge the budgetary difficulties in Nevada and will do our part, as we always have.”

He said the high court has reverted millions of dollars to the general fund in the past few years because of the budget crisis.

The court, however, has not imposed on its employees the unpaid, day-a-month furloughs that other state workers have had to take, arguing instead that it has met the required reductions in other ways.

The Supreme Court manages a judicial branch which also includes and funds the salaries of more than 70 district judges around the state.

Its general fund budget is about $60 million for the biennium. In addition, the judiciary receives just over half the administrative assessment revenue collected from court fines and fees — about $34 million for the biennium.


Thursday, December 30, 2010

Scott Sisters to be freed!

Two Mississippi sisters who have spent 16 years in prison over an $11 armed robbery will be released with an unusual stipulation: one must donate a kidney to the other.

Gov. Haley Barbour, who suspended their sentences, said Wednesday that Gladys Scott, 36, must donate a kidney to her sister, Jamie, 38.

Each of the Scott sisters got two life sentences after they were convicted by a jury of robbing two people near the town of Forest.

Although they would be eligible for parole in 2014, the Department of Corrections "believes the sisters no longer pose a threat to society" and their incarceration is no longer necessary for rehabilitation, Barbour said in a statement.

Read more here Kidney donation a condition of sisters' release in Mississippi

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Cory Booker uses twitter to help clear Newark streets of snow after blizzard

While NJ Governor Christie is chilling out of state and NYC's Mayor Bloomberg is being justifiably blasted for the cities handling of clearing city streets Cory Booker the mayor of Newark NJ grabbed a shovel and with the help of twitter dug out his fellow residents. Watch video below:

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

2010 top 10 wealthiest Black Americans

[ SOURCE ]Here is a list of the top 10 wealthiest African Americans. It's no surpise that Oprah is #1 but some of the others may or may not surprise you?

#1 Oprah Winfrey- 2.4 Billion

#2 Tiger Woods-700 million

#3 Earvin "Magic" Johnson-500 million

#4 Michael Jordan-400 million

#5 Bob Johnson-450 millionn

#6  William “Bill” Cosby – $425 million

#7  Sheila Johnson – ex-wife of BET founder Bob Johnson and owner of the Washington Mystics of the WNBA – $400 million

#8  R. Donahue Peeples – head of the largest Black-owned real estate development firm in the nation – $350 million

#9  Barry Gordy-$320 million.

#10  The top ten is rounded out by another real estate giant: Chicago’s Quintin Primo III. The 57-year-old Harvard business school graduate has wealth of $300 million.

Monday, December 27, 2010

LOVE: A new collection of love poems just $1.75

My new book for the Amazon Kindle, LOVE $1.75 . I have written a collection of 15 poems about love, relationships and heartache. Here is one of the poems.
I Do ( Dedicated to my wife Quanda )

Two words that mean everything
Two words that come with a ring
Two words that stand for something
Two words that without which I have nothing.

Buy the book for the Kindle here: LOVE

Great news! You don't need a Kindle to read my new book LOVE. Amazon has a free app that allows you to read Kindle books on your computer. Check it out here: Kindle app for PC

Consumption of fried fish may increase stroke risk for African Americans

The steep rate of death from stroke in a swath of
Southern states often referred to as the "stroke belt"
might be linked to a higher consumption of fried
fish in that region, new research suggests.

A study published in Wednesday's Neurology shows
people living in the stroke belt - which comprises
North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama,
Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas and Louisiana -
eat more fried fish and less nonfried fish than
people living in the rest of the country, and blacks
eat more fried fish than whites.

"Differences in dietary fish consumption, specifically
in cooking methods, may be contributing to higher
rates of stroke in the stroke belt and also among
African-Americans," says study author Fadi Nahab,
medical director for the Stroke Program at Emory
University Hospital in Atlanta.

The research, part of the large government-funded
study Reasons for Geographic and Racial
Differences in Stroke (REGARDS), involved 21,675
participants from across the country, The average
age was 65.

Read more Stroke deaths higher where there's fried fish aplenty

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Jesse Jackson Jr, " We have all erred"

U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., who has largely avoided the public eye of late, said in a rare interview Saturday that he is a public servant, not a perfect one, and didn't rule out a future run at higher office.

Jackson, who has been dogged by links to the corruption case against former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich and questions about his own relationship with a female "social acquaintance," told The Associated Press that he continually struggles with his "personal shortcomings."

That includes mending his family relationships over the "immensely personal matter" of the female acquaintance and assessing his political ambitions, which once included Chicago mayor or U.S. senator.

"Every one of us has erred in their personal lives and while I don't claim to be a perfect servant, I'm a public servant," Jackson told the AP. "Often times we carry with us the burdens of our personal shortcomings even as we struggle to articulate and clarify a message that helps other people. That what I dedicated my life to."

The congressman spoke to the AP after delivering a rousing Christmas message to hundreds of detainees at Cook County Boot Camp along with his father, the Rev. Jesse Jackson. It was an unusual public appearance for the congressman.

Read the full story here: AP Exclusive: Jackson Jr says 'everyone has erred'

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Let's Talk Honestly: African American Book for the Kindle

So you have finally joined the rest of us in the 21 Century and got yourself a Kindle for Christmas. Well might I suggest a rather excellent book for you. Let's Talk Honestly: One Black Man's Thoughts.

This book is a collection of poems and essays by yours truuly George L. Cook III. These writings are inspired by my experiences as a soldier, community activist, time in politics, coach, husband, and father. And yes they are inpsired by his experiences as a black man living in the United States.

Check it out.

Friday, December 24, 2010

How Pres Clinton saved one convicts life & how she is helping others

Kemba Smith Pradia served seven years of 24-year sentence for crack cocaine before clemency. Since then, Kemba Smith Pradia graduated from college,has received awards for her efforts to educate the public about the social, economic and political consequences of drug policies. She received a Soros Justice Postgraduate Fellowship for advocates , and set up The Kemba Smith foundation to help many caught in the same situation she once was in.

Read more about Kemba My life saved by reprieve of 24-year sentence for crack

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Anti abortion ads attacking planned parenthood aimed at black women

With the tag line "The most dangerous place for some children is in the womb," Heroic Media an Austin-based pro-life nonprofit organization has put together a nationwide anti-abortion media campaign that reaches out to black women and blast Planned Parenthood , which offers abortions.

"The overwhelming majority of abortion facilities are in minority neighborhoods. We think they need to know that," said Kim Speirs, Heroic Media's director of communications. Check out their site here and watch their ad below.

NAACP: Texas school curriculum biased against African-Americans

Civil rights groups alleged in federal court Texas school social studies curriculum standards discriminate against African-Americans and other minorities.

The Texas State Conference of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the Texas League of United Latin American Citizens said in Austin that, for example, this year's new curriculum teaches students about the Black Panthers' violence but minimizes Ku Klux Klan violence,

Read more here Rights groups: Texas curriculum biased

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Louisiana: High number of democratic black voters taken off the rolls

A higher percentage than usual of black Democratic voters came off state election rolls during last weekend’s legally required cleansing of chronic non-voters.

State election officials attribute the situation in large part to Hurricane Katrina’s 2005 displacement of people from Orleans Parish, which is heavily Democratic and black.

Typically, the percentages of canceled black, white, Democratic and Republican voters end up being “a mirror image” of the pre-purge statewide voter registration percentages, secretary of state spokesman Jacques Berry said.

“But that is not the case this go-round because of so many people coming off the rolls in Orleans,” Berry said.

Pre-purge black voters represented 30.6 percent of the state’s 2.94 million voters.

Read more High number of black voters taken off rolls

Monday, December 20, 2010

President Obama: The Comeback Kid

For a guy who took a “shellacking” in the midterm elections six weeks ago, President Obama is doing pretty well during this lame-duck political period.

He wrestled Republicans and his own liberal wing into passage of the tax cut/unemployment deal. After a fitful start, he got a trade deal with South Korea. Saturday he saw a huge win in the demise of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” ban on gays serving openly in the military. And his allies on Capitol Hill so far have been able to beat back amendments that could have spiked the START nuclear weapons treaty with Russia.

“Is Barack Obama the new Comeback Kid?” Read more Some now see Obama as the 'comeback kid'

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Racism is great for business at this general store

A store owner in Noblesville Indiana is making money selling bars of soap with racist names like "Kolored Kids " and "darkie ". He says he is doing nothing wrong and so what if some think it's racist. America was built on racism.


Gays in the military: It's not a big deal.

By George L. Cook III

In the interest of full disclosure I must let you know that I am straight not gay. I am however a black man who has served in our nations military as a member of the NJ National Guard. That gives me a perspective on the civil rights and military issues at play here. I believe that if you truly believe in civil rights you believe in civil rights for ALL not just your particular group.

Now if you already don't know the US Senate has passed a repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell which will allow gays to serve openly in the United States Military.

I must say to those like Senator John McCain who are strongly opposed to gays serving openly that there wont be much actual change in our military.

Diana Ross's "I'm Coming Out" wont start blaring from PA systems at our nation's military bases and our men won't start dancing around wearing tiaras and bikini briefs.

This will not be as big a deal in the military as it will in the general public. Our military personnel will be told about the new policy and they will follow orders plain and simple.

Yes there will be a few knuckleheads but they will find themselves in a nice comfy cell in Leavenworth.

But for the most part are men and women will accept the change and move on. Our fighting forces are the best in the world and very professional. And yes that includes the US Navy. ( I know that was unnecessary but I'm still mad about Navy beating Army in football )

These are men and women who can resist the incredible urge not to fire back when being fired upon. These are men and women that can follow the rules of engagement under incredible pressure. If they can do that under life and death situations I think that they can easily adapt to serving with openly gay personnel.

As a matter of fact that most in the military already know who the gay and lesbian personnel are and really don't care as long as they do their jobs.

Most in the military have much to worry about with two wars, being parents, and financial situations. Trust me whether are not the guy next you is gay is not on the top of any one's things to worry about list.

Senator McCain the US Military will be just fine.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Obesity Among African American Women: A black woman's view

Check out this article from J.E. Ward a black woman who was once small and now has become bigger due to pregnancy and bad eating habits. She keeps it very real and talks about why black woman have issues with weight, why it's accepted in black communities, and the real harm that being overweight is doing to black woman.

Read her article here:
Obesity Among African American Women: When Little Sisters Become Big Sisters, and Why We Need to Stop It

Friday, December 17, 2010

Comcast adding four black owned networks

[ SOURCE ] Seeking to neutralize political opposition to its proposed merger with NBC Universal Inc., Comcast Corp. says it will add four cable networks owned, or partly owned, by African Americans over the next eight years, as well as a new English-language channel aimed at Asian Americans.

Those provisions are part of separate agreements Comcast executives signed with civil rights groups.

The African American agreement will be filed Friday with the Federal Communications Commission, Comcast said, and the Asian American agreement was filed earlier in the week. Both call for Comcast to boost diversity in its corporate management and entertainment content and to establish councils to review diversity projects.

One criterion the FCC will evaluate in considering the "public benefit" of the Comcast-NBC Universal deal is the diversity of voices in media that will result from the cable and entertainment giants' merger.

African American groups that signed the agreement to be filed with the FCC were the NAACP, the National Urban League, and the Rev. Al Sharpton's National Action Network, according to a memorandum of understanding between the groups and Comcast.

According to that agreement, the four channels added to the Comcast lineup will be majority-owned or substantially owned by African Americans. The channels will be added to Comcast over eight years.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Eric LeGrand:Paralized Rutgers player has feeling in hands!!!!!

[ SOURCE ] Rutgers defensive tackle Eric LeGrand has some feeling in his hands, the Rutgers athletic department confirmed today.

LeGrand, who was paralyzed from the neck down Oct. 16 while trying to make a tackle on a kickoff return during Rutgers' game against Army, has been receiving treatment and physical therapy at Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation in West Orange.

The news of LeGrand's movement was first reported by NBC New York.

Late last month, LeGrand's spinal cord injury was deemed "incomplete," and he was also taken off a ventilator and has been breathing on his own.

The completeness of the injury refers to the amount of neurological damage -- not the actual condition -- of the spinal cord. LeGrand’s injury was at the C3-C4 level, which affects movement below his shoulders.

"The fact he is incomplete is a positive sign, but it doesn’t mean how much he gets back in terms of neurologic function," Andrew Hecht, director of the National Football League’s Spine Care Program for Retired Players, said in November.

Today, the Football Writer's Association of America recognized LeGrand with the Orange Bowl-FWAA Courage Award.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

4 yr olds hands duct taped together beacuse he wouldn't wash his hands at school????

At a school in Chicago a four year old black child had his hands duct taped together because he refused to take a nap, and he didn’t want to wash his hands. The boy went to Piu-Tak Chinese Christian school which is run by the Chinese Christian Union Church and the parents of the child believe racism played a huge part in this.

Read more here Why did school duct-tape 4-year-old?

Black farmers wont get paid until 2012

[ SOURCE ] It could be at least a year before
black farmers get any payments from the $1.2
billion fund set up to settle decades of
discrimination claims against federal agriculture

"There will be a deadline for claims, but it has not
yet been set," said Andrew Marks, a lead counsel for
the farmers. "It's highly unlikely that anyone will get
any money until some time in 2012."

President Barack Obama signed
legislation setting up a fund to pay thousands of
black farmers who say they were denied loans and
other assistance for years by federal agriculture
officials because of their race.

This marks the second round of payments for black
farmers. Thousands of farmers received payments as
part of a 1999 class-action settlement in what is
known as the Pigford I case. The fund created by the
new law would pay others who missed that filing

Before any money is paid out, the settlement must be
approved by a court, an arbitration system must be
set up to review claims, and notices must be sent to
thousands of farmers.

Monday, December 13, 2010

NAACP chapter has first white president

The president of the Mississippi NAACP says the selection of a white man to lead one of the organization's chapters shows its real mission to represent more than one race.

Michael Teasley, a white man in his mid-30s who grew up in rural Rankin County, is the new president of the JSU chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

Read more: NAACP chapter has first white president

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Train conductor turns down shot at the NFL to take care of his parents

Keith Fitzhugh had a chance that many of us would have jumped at. He had a shot to play in the NFL but he choose steady employment over the uncertainty of an NFL job beacuse he thinks it's more important to have a steady income so that he may take care of his parents one of whom is disabled. Check out this interview he did with CNN.

Most americans see Pres. Obama and Halle Berry as more black than white

I know this was an issue when President Obama first took office in 2008 but it is very interesting to see what people think two years later. You have to wonder what the perception would be if Obama was percieved as doing a better job. Besides posting this story gave me a reason to post a picture of Halle Berry....LOL. George Cook

U.S. adults view President Barack Obama and actress Halle Berry -- one parent white and one parent black -- as minorities, researchers say.

Lead author Arnold K. Ho, a doctoral student in psychology at Harvard University and James Sidanius, professor of psychology and of African and African-American studies at Harvard, say Americans tend to see biracial people not as equal members of both parent groups, but as belonging more to their minority parent group.

Read more here: Obama seen as more black than white

Friday, December 10, 2010

Congressional Black Caucus against Obama-GOP tax plan

Members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) announced Friday that an “overwhelming majority” of the 41-member caucus opposes President Obama’s compromise plan with Republicans to extend the Bush-era tax rates.

“Any extension of the Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans is just a non-starter,” said Virginia Democratic Rep. Robert Scott, a CBC member.

Caucus members said they have the strongest reservations about Obama’s agreement to extend current tax rates for households earning more than $250,000 annually and the proposal to set the estate tax at 35 percent for assets worth beyond $5 million. CBC Chairman Barbara Lee of California said the plan could place an unfair burden on the working class to reduce the national deficit.

“We are extremely concerned that the cuts that could be made should this package pass would disproportionally hurt the poor and low income communities and further erode the safety net,” she said.

Read this entire article here Congressional Black Caucus comes out strong against Obama-GOP tax plan

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Video: President Obama signs Black Farmer Settelement

The President signs the Claims Resolution Act of 2010, legislation that settles claims from black farmers and American Indians for unfairly denied Federal aid and unpaid royalties. December 8, 2010.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Al Sharpton wants FCC to take Rush Limbaugh off the air

Appearing on MSNBC's 'The Ed Show' Al Sharpton called on the FCC to take Rush Limbaugh off the air, citing examples of racist comments the radio host has made about President Obama. I think Limbaugh is an ignorant bastard too but he has the right to say what he wants. Watch Sharpton's comments below:

Monday, December 06, 2010

U.S. Commission on Civil Rights Releases Report on New Black Panther Party Voter Intimidation Litigation

WASHINGTON, Dec. 3, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The United States Commission on Civil Rights has approved its interim report on the Justice Department's commitment to even-handed enforcement of the civil rights laws entitled "Race Neutral Enforcement of the Law? DOJ and the New Black Panther Party Litigation: An Interim Report." The interim report is posted on the Commission's website.

The case stemmed from an incident that occurred in Philadelphia during the 2008 presidential election in which two New Black Panther Party (NBPP) members stood in the entrance to a polling place in full paramilitary garb shouting racial slurs, one of them brandishing a nightstick. In January 2009, a civil suit was initiated against the NBPP, its chairman, and the two men at the polling place for alleged Voting Rights Act violations. Despite the entry of a default in DOJ's favor, in May 2009 the Department abruptly reversed course and dismissed charges against all but one of the defendants, and reduced the original sanctions it requested against the remaining defendant.

The Commission issued subpoenas for documents and for the testimony of key DOJ witnesses, including those supervisors allegedly responsible for the change in course of the lawsuit. Â The Department, however, refused to allow anyone with firsthand knowledge of the lawsuit to testify before the Commission and failed to provide critical documents relating to the Department's decision-making process.

The Department's efforts to stonewall the Commission's investigation were largely successful until two career staff attorneys testified before the Commission in defiance of the Department's ban, at great professional risk to themselves. These individuals, Christopher Coates and J. Christian Adams, both testified that the Department's reversal of the New Black Panther Party litigation reflected a culture within the Justice Department that believes voting rights laws should not be enforced in a race-neutral fashion. Both witnesses testified that some DOJ personnel refused to work on voting cases in which the defendant was black and the victim white, and that those who worked on such cases suffered harassment within the Department. Mr. Coates further testified that current political appointees have openly stated their opposition to race-neutral enforcement of voting rights laws, testimony that remains unchallenged by the Department.

Although such testimony supported the need for thorough investigation, DOJ continued to withhold relevant documents and preclude relevant officials and supervisors from testifying. The Commission was thus limited in its ability to complete a final report. Â As a result, the Commission has issued an interim report that describes the evidence that has been collected up to this point and the lack of cooperation by the Department of Justice.

Although the Commission has the power to subpoena witnesses and written material and requires federal agencies to cooperate fully with its investigations, its authority to seek legal recourse when the Attorney General refuses to enforce Commission subpoenas, as has occurred repeatedly during this investigation, is unclear. Â The report notes that the Department has an inherent conflict of interest when it decides not to cooperate with the Commission's investigations of DOJ's actions. Â

The Commission recommends, therefore, that Congress consider amendments to the Commission's statute to address investigations in which the Attorney General and/or the Department of Justice have a conflict of interest arising from the Commission's requests for information. Â Options might include requiring that the Attorney General respond in writing whenever the Commission requests the appointment of a special counsel to represent it in court; a statutory provision clarifying that the Commission may hire its own counsel and proceed independently in federal court; or a conscious decision by Congress not to alter the current authority that allows the Attorney General and the Department of Justice to act against the Commission's interest without explanation.

The report was approved by a 5-2 vote. Chairman Reynolds and Commissioners Gaziano, Heriot, Kirsanow and Taylor voted in favor; Commissioners Melendez and Yaki voted against; Vice Chair Thernstrom was not present for the vote.

MISSSEY (Motivating, Inspiring, Supporting, & Serving Sexually Exploited Youth)

When most people think about prostitution and human trafficking they think of far away underdeveloped lands. The truth is it is happening right here in our city. Oakland has a huge problem with our young ladies being forced into this dangerous lifestyle.

"Every day some of the Bay Area’s most vulnerable youth are sexually exploited for other people's profit. They are bought and sold, beaten, drugged, hustled, molested, and raped. Ultimately, they are discarded when they no longer fetch a p...rice. The number of Commercially Sexually Exploited Children (CSEC) is increasing, while the average age is decreasing. Further, these youth are often considered criminals, as if they're seeking to be abused, rather than victims of domestic human trafficking )”. Now there is place we can go to help these young ladies.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Video: Charlie Rangel's first interview since being censured

In his first interview since being censured, Rep. Charlie Rangel talks about the circumstances around that vote on CNN"s State of the Union.

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Support this black owned company this Xmas: Pooka Pure & Simple

I found out about this black owned and New Jersey based company after my dayghter took a field trip there with her girl scout troop. Pooka sells skin and bath care products that contain oils from different nuts and vegetables, which contain many vitamins & minerals for your skin. They also use essential oils, which are the oils extracted from flower petals, leaves, bark, twigs and any other plant parts. Pooka contains no preservatives or dyes.

Learn more about Pooka here: