Cappuccino Soul

Cappuccino Soul

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Dem Las Days

2 Timothy 3:1-9 (from the Gullah translation of The New Testament: De Nyew Testament)

Now den, ondastan dat jurin dem las day, dey gwine be heapa trouble.

Cause day gwine be people wa lob jes deysef, an dey gwine hab de big eye, da wahn ebryting. Dey gwine brag on deysef an pit deysef op, da tink dey betta den oda people. Dey gwine sult people, an ain gwine pay no mind ta wa dey modda, needa dey fada tell um fa do. Dey ain gwine tell nobody tankya fa nottin, an dey ain gwine hab no hona fa God.

Dey ain gwine cyah none tall bout oda people an ain gwine hab mussy pon nobody. Dey gwine tell lie bout one noda an hole one noda cheap, an dey ain gwine be able fa troll deyself. Dey gwine go wile ef people git een dey way, an dey gwine hate ebryting dat good.

Dey ain gwine be people dat oda people kin trus. Dey gwine do ting dout dey study pon wa gwine happen cause ob wa dey done. Dey gwine be biggity an lob dey own pledja. An dey ain gwine lob God none tall.

Dey mek like dey da folla god bot dey ain gree fa leh God hab no powa oba dey life. Ya mus dohn mix wid dem people yah.

Cause some dem sneak roun an mek dey way eenta people house an go ton ooman dem haat, ooman wa ain know wa dey oughta bleebe. Dem ooman burden down wid dey plenty sin an dey da do all kind ob ebil ting wa dey haat gim fa do.

Dem ooman ready all de time fa jes keep on da laan, bot dey ain neba able fa know wa ting true.

Jes like Jannes an Jambres been ginst Moses, same way so, dem people yah, dey ginst de trute. Dey people wa ain da tink right cause dey mind ebil. An God done ton um way cause dey ain bleebe right.

Bot dey ain gwine go faa, cause ebrybody gwine shim fa wa dey da, jes like wa happen ta Jannes an Jambres.

Who were Jannes and Jambres? Here's some information from The Daily Bible Study Web site by Wayne Blank:

Jannes and Jambres are mentioned only once in The Bible, by the apostle Paul in the second epistle to Timothy. Although they are not identified by name in the Old Testament, Rabbinic tradition holds that Jannes and Jambres were, or were among, the magicians who opposed Moses and Aaron at the time of the Exodus. The tradition would certainly be valid, otherwise Paul, while writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, would not have made it a part of the New Testament record.

Jannes and Jambres obviously had "miraculous" powers, but unlike Moses and Aaron who were empowered by God, the Pharaoh's magicians were Satanic.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Thank You Mr. Obama

Congratulations to Barack Obama for winning the South Carolina Democratic Primary race! He had to take a lot of criticism and weave and bob some punches from the Clinton camp, but he came out victorious.

I want to take this opportunity to thank Mr. Obama for being such a strong, positive, uplifting force. During these perilous times, we need to see more men, especially African-American men with integrity, who are committed fathers and husbands, upstanding gentlemen, and true warriors for justice. Many thanks Senator Obama. Whatever happens in the end, you've given African-Americans, and all people concerned with social justice, some much needed hope.

And check this out: Kennedy to Endorse Obama

At the Same Time

Can you be silly and cruel at the same time?...........I believe so.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Are These Dangerous Times?

Are we living in perilous times? My friend Cheryl and I had a lively and much needed discussion today about this question. Of course you have to decide for yourself, but we came to the conclusion (from some very wise pastors and our own experiences) that these are indeed dangerous times. It takes a great deal of insight, knowledge, and wisdom to walk in the light and to find people who walk in truth, we concluded. I encourage you to read these words from the Bible and have a discussion with somebody you respect.

2 Timothy 3:1-9
(King James version)

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.

For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,

Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,

Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;

Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,

Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith.

But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as their's also was.

Hold it down on the West Coast sister and I'll handle the East!

Friday, January 18, 2008

Black Columnist Speaks Out Against Misogyny

misogyny - a hatred of women

Here's an article about politics and misogyny that appeared earlier this week in the New York Times. I like it so much that I thought I'd post it here. Although my thoughts on what columnist Bob Herbert said below are abundant and passionate, I won't expound on what I think right now. But I have bolded the parts that deeply resonate with me. I'm very grateful for Bob Herbert's insight and courage. I hope more men, especially more African-American men, will speak up or out against misogynistic thoughts and actions. (By the way, Bob Herbert, the columnist who wrote this piece is an African-American man.)

Politics and Misogyny
By BOB HERBERT, New York Times Columnist
January 15, 2008

With Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton's win in New Hampshire, gender issues are suddenly in the news. Where has everybody been?

If there was ever a story that deserved more coverage by the news media, it's the dark persistence of misogyny in America. Sexism in its myriad destructive forms permeates nearly every aspect of American life. For many men, it's the true national pastime, much bigger than baseball or football.

Little attention is being paid to the toll that misogyny takes on society in general, and women and girls in particular.

Its forms are limitless. Hard-core pornography is a multibillion-dollar business, having spread far beyond the stereotyped raincoat crowd to anyone with a laptop and a password. Crowds of crazed photographers risk life and limb to get shots of Paris Hilton or Britney Spears without their underwear. At New York Jets home games, men regularly gather at Gate D to urge female fans to expose themselves.

In its grimmest aspects, misogyny manifests itself in hideous violence — from brutal beatings and rape to outright torture and murder. Fifteen months ago, a gunman invaded an Amish schoolhouse in rural Pennsylvania, separated the girls from the boys, and then shot 10 of the girls, killing five.

The cable news channels revel in stories about women (almost always young and attractive) who come to a gruesome end at the hands of violent men. The stories seldom, if ever, raise the issue of misogyny, which permeates not just the crimes themselves, but the coverage as well.

The latest of these obsessively covered stories concerned a pregnant marine, Maria Frances Lauterbach, who had complained to authorities that she had been raped by a fellow marine. Her body was found last week buried in a backyard fire pit in North Carolina.

It just so happens that the Democratic presidential candidates are campaigning this week in the misogyny capital of America: Nevada. It’s a perfect place to bring up the way women are viewed and treated in this society, but don’t hold your breath. Presidential wannabes are hardly in the habit of insulting the locals.

Prostitution is legal in much of Nevada and heavily promoted even where it’s not. In Las Vegas, where prostitution is illegal but flourishes nevertheless, Mayor Oscar Goodman has said that creating a series of legal, “magnificent” brothels would be a great development tool for his city.

The fundamental problem in all of this is that women and girls are dehumanized, opening the floodgates to every kind of mistreatment. "Once you dehumanize somebody, everything else is possible," said Taina Bien-Aimé, executive director of the women's advocacy group Equality Now.

A grotesque exercise in the dehumanization of women is carried out routinely at Sheri's Ranch, a legal brothel about an hour's ride outside of Vegas. There the women have to respond like Pavlov's dog to an electronic bell that might ring at any hour of the day or night.
At the sound of the bell, the prostitutes have five minutes to get to an assembly area where they line up, virtually naked, and submit to a humiliating inspection by any prospective customer who has happened to drop by.

If you don't think this is an issue worthy of a presidential campaign, consider the scandalous way that women are treated in the military and the fact that the winner of this election will become the commander in chief.

The sexual mistreatment of women in the military is widespread. The Defense Department financed a study in 2003 of female veterans seeking health assistance from the Department of Veterans Affairs. Nearly a third of those surveyed said they had been the victim of a rape or attempted rape during their service.

The Associated Press reported in 2006 that more than 80 military recruiters had been disciplined over the course of a year because of sexual misconduct with young women and girls who had considered joining the military.

There continue to be widespread complaints from women about rape and other forms of sexual attacks in the military, and about a culture that tends to protect the attackers.

To what extent are the candidates of either party concerned about these matters? Do they have any sense of how extensive and debilitating the mistreatment of women and girls really is?

We’ve become so used to the disrespectful, degrading, contemptuous and even violent treatment of women that we hardly notice it.
Staggering amounts of violence are unleashed against women and girls every day. Fashionable ads in mainstream publications play off of that violence, exploiting themes of death and dismemberment, female submissiveness and child pornography.

If we've opened the door to the issue of sexism in the presidential campaign, then let's have at it. It’s a big and important issue that deserves much more than lip service.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

From the Lakota Sioux Sweat Lodge

Endurance, cleanliness,
strength, purity
Will keep our lives straight
Our actions only for a good
Our words will be truth.
Only honesty shall come from our interaction
With all things.

(From the Lakota Sioux Sweat Lodge ceremony entry in Prayers for Healing: 365 Blessings, Poems, & Meditations)

Read more about Sweat Lodge ceremonies here.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Hillary and Her Forerunners in South America

If Hillary Clinton wins the Democratic nomination and goes on to win the presidential election in November, she would join the company of two powerful women leaders who rule in South America--Chile's Michelle Bachelet and Argentina's Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner.

Bachelet, who has served as Chile's president for two years now, is a 54-year-old single mother and pediatrician who suffered imprisonment, torture, and exile under the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet.

Fernandez won the Argentinan election in October and replaced her husband, Nestor Kirchner, as leader of that country last month. The handing of the baton from one Kirchner to another is reminiscent of Juan and Eva Peron (known affectionately as Evita). Of course commentators, politicians, and others have talked about the strong similarities between Fernandez, a lawyer and senator who followed her husband, and Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton.

A November 2007 New York Times article says that Fernandez is quite frequently compared to Hillary. Fernandez has openly said that Hillary is her idol, but figures show that Fernandez may have had an easier time of it in Argentina than Hillary may have in America. The New York Times article goes on to say this:

But even as Mrs. Kirchner (Fernandez) has looked north for inspiration, there are parts of Latin America that have been more successful than the United States in achieving gender equity. Women made up 39 percent of the legislatures in both Argentina and Costa Rica last year, while they accounted for only 16 percent of Congressional seats in the United States, according to the Inter-American Dialogue. And Mrs. Clinton’s current run notwithstanding, America has yet to elect a female president.

Looks like Hillary would have some sisters to relate to down in South America if she wins the whole shebang in November. That's a big "if" though. Let's see what happens.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Thoughts on Huckabee, Obama, and Hillary

I hate to admit this but I haven't really started paying much attention to the Presidential Primaries until now. Today I got a good look at Republican hopeful Mike Huckabee and the suave Senator from Illinois--Barack Obama on CPAN's coverage of the day before the New Hampshire primaries.

What struck me about Huckabee was his use of Star Parker (someone I had honestly never heard of until today). Parker gave a heartfelt and passionate endorsement and introduction to the former Arkansas governor. Star is a conservative commentator and founder of CURE, the Coalition on Urban Renewal & Education, a non-profit organization. Press releases and articles also repeatedly mention the fact that she was a single mother who was on welfare for a time.

Anyway, Star is really excited about her pal Huckabee. Let's see what she's so psyched about:

Huckabee is evidently all about equal education for all of America's children and pointed to the fact that he can give Ms. Parker a hug and not be chastised by anyone for it. (He's alluding here to the fact that Ms. Parker is black and he is white.)......OK??....... Huckabee also let it be known that he is "pro-life." He believes that Roe v. Wade should be over-turned.

And here's a little something from Mr. Huckabee's Web site that tells me that even if I were persuaded to ever vote Republican, he wouldn't get my vote:

I support the $3 billion the Senate has voted for border security. This money will train and deploy 23,000 more agents, add four drone planes, build 700 miles of fence and 300 miles of vehicle barriers, and put up 105 radar and camera towers. This money will turn "catch and release" into "catch and detain" of those entering illegally, and crack down on those who overstay their visas.

(This money could be spent on fixing our education system, universal healthcare, and/or creating more jobs!)

Now for Obama.

I already know a lot about Obama as I'm sure many of you do. I read Dreams from My Father and I've been excited to hear a lot more from this candidate. Here are just a few tidbits of his speech in New Hampshire last night:

- Obama said a lot of politicians and the press are mocking him for talking so much about "hope." He said, "My father left me when I was two. My mother raised me to have hope." (Well alright!)

- He expressed concern about Global Warming and admitted that dealing with the climate changes in the world would be costly, but he's planning to address the issue.
( I just saw Al Gore's documentary An Inconvenient Truth, so I understand now what all the fuss is about.)

- Obama said he wants to make sure that we don't have any homeless veterans on the streets. (I'm hoping this extends to the other homeless individuals and families who cling to the streets because they don't have homes.)

- "I've seen this country led into war because of fear and falsehood." (You said it B.) Here's Obama's plan (from his Web site) for the war if he wins:

Obama will immediately begin to remove our troops from Iraq. He will remove one to two combat brigades each month, and have all of our combat brigades out of Iraq within 16 months. Obama will make it clear that we will not build any permanent bases in Iraq. He will keep some troops in Iraq to protect our embassy and diplomats; if al Qaeda attempts to build a base within Iraq, he will keep troops in Iraq or elsewhere in the region to carry out targeted strikes on al Qaeda.

And finally, a lot of people have criticized Hillary Clinton for crying today when she talked about her hard fight in the race, her love for the country and its people. Can't a woman express herself with a little emotion sometimes? Man!

When I told my 5-year-old daughter that no woman has ever been president of the United States and that if she's elected, Hillary Clinton would be the first woman president, she said it's not fair that a woman hasn't been president. "We need some women to be president too!" she said.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Order My Steps

Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me.
--Psalm 119:133 (King James Version)

Order My Steps (Spiritual)

Order my steps in your word dear Lord
Lead me guide me everyday
Send your anointing father I pray
Order my steps in your word
Please, order my steps in your word

Humbly I ask thee teach me your will
While you are working help me be still
Satan is busy God is real
Order my steps in your word
Please, order my steps in your word

Write on my tongue let my words edify
Let the words of my mouth be exceptable in thy sight
Take charge of my thoughts both day and night
Please order my steps in your word
Please order my steps in your word

(Repeat Chorus)

I want to walk worthy (pause) my calling to fulfill
Please order my steps Lord .... and I'll do your blessed will
The world is ever changing (pause) but you are still the same
If you order my steps (pause) I'll praise your name

Order my steps (pause) in your word
Order my tongue (pause) in your word
Guide my feet (pause) in your word
Wash my heart (pause) in your word
Show me how to walk (pause) in your word
Show me how to talk (pause) in your word
When I need a brand new song to sing
Show me how to let your praises ring

In your word .....
In your word .....
Please order my steps in your word
Please order my steps in your word

Click here to hear the The Milbourne Family Choir sing this powerful tune.