“Another Day, Another Black Man Murdered By Police,” says Kareem Abdul-Jabbar; Family member of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev says, “he’s completely innocent”; President Obama visits Bob Marley museum; The White House mocks Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Twitter; and Today marks the 150th anniversary of the end of The American Civil War. All this and more, please follow the links below.
Czech President bans US ambassador from his castle; Saudi Arabia welcomes Iran Nuclear Deal; President Obama explains the Obama doctrine; Judge says NYC woman can serve divorce papers via Facebook message; and watch John Oliver tell Edward Snowden that no one knows who he is. All this and more, please follow the links below.
Indiana lawmakers worked late into the night on religious freedom law fix; Iranian nuclear talks will extend for another 3 months; Impoverished pregnant woman from Tanzania is forced to haul water to their own baby deliveries; Ted Cruz has the worst Senate Armed Committee’s attendance by far; and Here’s how police and prosecutors are treating “raping while black” like a crime. All this and more please follow the links below
Biologists calls for ban on gene editing technique to change human DNA; Suicide bombers strike rebel-linked mosque in Yemen; Former CIA Director David Petraus says Iran-backed militias are a greater threat than ISIS; Scientists are on the hunt to solve where Ebola hide between human epidemics; and here are six steps to win at every interview. All this and more, please follow the links below.
John Kerry’s dream of Middle Eastern peace died with Netanyahu’s win in Israel; UN recommends International Criminal Court to prosecute Isis for genocide and war crimes; Tunisia makes 9 arrest after museum attack which killed 23 people; Draft nuclear deals would limit Iran to 6,000 centrifuges; and Conservative talk show host Glenn Beck announces that he is leaving the Republican Party. All this and more, please follow the links below.
Dear brothers and sisters, not many of you should become teachers in the church, for we who teach will be judged more strictly. Indeed, we all make many mistakes. For if we could control our tongues, we would be perfect and could also control ourselves in every other way.
We can make a large horse go wherever we want by means of a small bit in its mouth. And a small rudder makes a huge ship turn wherever the pilot chooses to go, even though the winds are strong. In the same way, the tongue is a small thing that makes grand speeches.
But a tiny spark can set a great forest on fire. And among all the parts of the body, the tongue is a flame of fire. It is a whole world of wickedness, corrupting your entire body. It can set your whole life on fire, for it is set on fire by hell itself.
People can tame all kinds of animals, birds, reptiles, and fish, but no one can tame the tongue. It is restless and evil, full of deadly poison. Sometimes it praises our Lord and Father, and sometimes it curses those who have been made in the image of God. And so blessing and cursing come pouring out of the same mouth. Surely, my brothers and sisters, this is not right! Does a spring of water bubble out with both fresh water and bitter water? Does a fig tree produce olives, or a grapevine produce figs? No, and you can’t draw fresh water from a salty spring.
(James 3:1-12 NLT)
My favorite quote that stems from this verse is this:
“Sometimes it [the tongue] praises our Lord and Father, and sometimes it curses those who have been made in the image of God.”
This is such a prolific message because it tells us: if you curse at your fellow man and woman, you are cursing at God himself because they were made in the image of God. So to curse at another is to curse at God in his face. As much as we want to shame people, by cursing, for their wicked acts, remember that the act of cursing is, in itself, a wicked act–so the shame should also be placed on you.
We hold a powerful weapon; so be mindful of what you say. We live in a wicked world but it doesn’t mean that we have to curse at one another, in order to make it right. So continue to love one another, and bless each other with words of praise.
Each week I write a political issue that affects you and the world around you.
This week’s “Weekly Political Report”: Race “Does” Matter in America (The Ferguson Edition)
This post was inspired by my mentor Dr. Cornel West
(Photo credit: Flickr User Joe Topichak)
On Aug, 9th 2014, America and the world witnessed yet again the death of another unarmed African American teenager by the hands of a law enforcer. Michael Brown, a 18 year old, was fatally shot by 28 year old police officer Darren Wilson, and has started an uproar in the streets of Ferguson, Missouri. Now in its 11th day, there has been no sign of peaceful resolution, to either curb the violence between Ferguson citizens and police officials or reduce the armory and weapons of the police force (military tanks, tear gas, etc.)
While its still unclear of what really happened between the teenager and the police officer, Americans are stilled faced with this divisive status quo:
An unarmed black male shot (multiple times) by an armed white police officer–no sugar coating.
Rather than talk about the evidence of this case or the witnesses’ accounts of what actually happened, I will instead talk about why “Race ‘Does’ Matter in America” from a political stand point and what must be done in Ferguson, Missouri (and across America) to prevent this from happening again–using concrete facts and examples.
Why Does Race Matter in America?
From a political standpoint, we are a nation of immigrants and “Race” implicitly drives the day in America–whether it be socioeconomic status, jobs, voting rights, immigration, foreign policy, the justice system, etc.. We come from different walks of life in different shapes, sizes, faiths, and shades of color. And what Americans (and citizens around the world) need to have is “perspective.” To recognize that each race has a history of discrimination, and not be so quick to “brush it off”.
This incident of Michael Brown is a tragedy and comes from a long history racial discrimination which young black men and women in America have been wrongfully targeted by law enforcement or the justice system for no reason except for the color of their skin–dating back to the Civil Rights and Segregation era. And it is because of the unwillingness of people (like the law enforcement) to not recognize this history, that we see “Race and Police Brutality” again and again in American Television–whether it be the post-Civil Rights era (like Rodney King) or today’s era (like Trayvon Martin & Eric Garner). The history is there, and will repeat itself until it is recognized. Brown University and other sources have published this report:
- St. Louis. situated just below of Ferguson (where the shooting took place) is the 9th most segregated metro area in America, as of 2010. (Brown University)
- In a town that’s over 60% black, Ferguson has: a police chief and a mayor that is white, only one city council that is black, one school board member is black, and just 3 out of 53 police officers are black. (US Census; City of Ferguson; Ferguson)
- In 2013, Ferguson police officials have arrested 483 black people while 36 white people were arrested–and when Ferguson police officers arrest and search black people for contraband, only 1 in 5 are caught with them verses white people in Ferguson which is much higher, 1 in 3 (Missouri Attorney General)
These are the facts and they are not sugar coated–you cannot deny them. Many Americans, who will read this, won’t view it as a big issue (versus what is going on now in Ferguson, Missouri). But, politically speaking,
“If you have a body of government that is disproportionate to the size and views of one minority population (a minority classified by gender, race, or religion) in one particular region, the results are catastrophic!
Political unrest is bound to happen, example being today. This is a political issue as much as it is a racial one. However, the core reason why I think “Race ‘Does’ Matter in America” (which goes back to having “perspective”) is the current crises in Iraq.
In July 2014, I did a radio talk at UR Business Network on the collapse of the Post-Iraqi War government. And what I said in that talk–as to “why the new Iraqi government collapsed?”–was this: the Shia government (the current Iraqi Government) marginalized their minority tribes the Sunnis and Kurds–especially the Sunnis– with their heavy armor military presence and force. This in return led to the growing opposition against the Shia government!
So it doesn’t matter where you are in the world. As long as you have a body of government that marginalizes one minority group by police or military force, you will always have political unrest in the streets.
The political disaster in Iraq is happening in the same fashion in Ferguson, Missouri. You can call the Mike Brown shooting “a freak accident” or “self-defense” all you want, but given the concrete facts from credible sources and the political perspective of having a disproportionate government overwhelm a minority population, the Michael Brown shooting incident cannot be brushed aside nor can “Race” in America.
Not to say that the government in Ferguson, Missouri will collapse, but the elements of political terror and unrest will continue unless there is a solid conversation on “Race” in Ferguson and a body of government that will represent all minorities–which is similar to what America is doing in Iraq today.
What must be done in Ferguson, Missouri (and across America) to prevent this from happening again?
First, bring Darren Wilson to trial and let the system work under Eric Holder’s watch. Second, Ferguson citizens and the police force must establish a truce of non-violence (during and after the Michael Brown trial) and start having a serious dialogue on racial disparity in their city–re-evaluate the current city government (and law enforcement) and find ways to discourage racial profiling and encourage racial diversity that will reflect the minority population of Ferguson, then, Third, have Perspective!
The sooner Americans, and citizens across the globe, have this perspective of not marginalizing a minority group, the better. The city government of Ferguson, Missouri, by all means, must not reflect the same intrusive acts done by the current “collapsed” government of Iraq–it cannot oppress or overwhelm any minority population by military tanks or force.
We are Americans and we treat Americans as our own–Michael Brown is an American! Like it or not!
Mistakes have been made in the Michael Brown incident, but Ferguson and the State of Missouri can still resolve this matter by reducing the huge racial disparity in the workforce and have a government (and police force) that is reflective of the African-American community.
The ultimate goal, in my opinion, is to set up a training course, for law enforcement and Americans, on “Racial Harassment” (like “Sexual Harassment”) that will teach people the existence of racial discrimination in America and learn how to conduct themselves in a professional manner to prevent acts of racial prejudice–and I call on President Obama to enact this legislation.
For more people and politics go to www.urbusinessnetwork.com
Here is a source where I pulled my facts from: Ferguson is 60% Black. Virtually All its Cops are White (Mother Jones)
DISCLAIMER: THIS IS MY OWN POLITICAL OPINION. FOR QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS PLEASE DIRECT THEM TO MY CONTACT PAGE
FYI: This will be my last Weekly Political Report for Fall 2014. For more of my political editorials go and click on “Weekly Political Report” located on the right hand side of this page below my profile pic. You can also go to Archives which is located above, next to Home Page, read more of political editorials
If you like this editorial, please send it to friends and family, so we can stop the violence in Ferguson, Missouri
Also here are two YouTube videos, that I found very helpful, to explain the war in Iraq and an idea of a training course on “racial harassment”.
This video is part 2 out of 5 videos of an documentary done by Bill Cosby. I recommend you watch all the parts.
Every week I post a miscellaneous article/review/blog that I have written in the past or an interview of an extraordinary individual.
This week’s Throwback Thursdays: Cuisine & Dining at Artisan Bistro.
Having the right breakfast in the morning does make a tremendous difference in your work. And I experienced this while I was dining at Artisan Bistro, which is located inside Ritz Carlton Hotel at Downtown Boston.
Instead of starting my day with a cold bagel and hot coffee (in the size of a paper cup) at either Starbucks or Dunkin’ Donuts, I decided to treat myself to a Three-Star quality breakfast.
The first time that I visited this venue was when I was just promoting for AfriQue Events; I was looking for a venue for Roy AfriQue to host a possible a cocktail/networking event. When I walked in, I assumed Artisan Bistro only served dinner and drinks. But when I took a quick glance at the menu, I soon realized that they also served breakfast and lunch. Seeing this, I then decided to come back the following morning and try their breakfast–and boy was it the best decision that I could have ever made!
This is the very comment I made, when I first sat down at Artisan Bistro that morning:
“To my left was a beautiful retired couple who were sharing their travel adventures with their waiter; To my right was a group of business professionals, sitting at a long table, discussing productivity over a cup of coffee; and to my center was an entrepreneur who was reading the newspaper while conducting business on his laptop with a traveling bag at his side.”
Being surrounded by a group of professionals and entrepreneurs was quite aspiring–it almost felt like a rite of passage. And the mental ease I experienced that morning, cannot be put into words. Ever since my dining experience at Artisan Bistro, I have been enjoying my morning breakfast there for the past eight months! My philosophy is this:
“If you are going to act like a business person, then you might as well eat like one!”
During my morning breakfasts at Artisan Bistro, I have ran into famous entrepreneurs like Mark Cuban (creator of Shark Tank) and athletic superstar David Ortiz (World Series MVP from the Red Sox)!
And so my breakfast of choice, if you do decide to come here, is: Raisin Bran Cereal w/ Mixed Berries. (It goes well with a morning newspaper)
With great food, comes great service. And I want to thank Artisan Bistro and their staff for their excellent food and service. Thank you Ivan, Byron, Robert, Judy, and to the rest of the morning staff for keeping me healthy and well taken care of!
To read my first dining experience at Artisan Bistro, click on the link below.
Artisan Bistro (during Breakfast hours) is Open Seating, but you can call them to reserve a table at 617-574-7176.
We Harvest What We Plant
Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself. Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. If you think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself. You are not that important.
Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else. For we are each responsible for our own conduct. Those who are taught the word of God should provide for their teachers, sharing all good things with them. Don’t be misled—you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant. Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful nature will harvest decay and death from that sinful nature. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit.
So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith. (Galatians 6:1-10 NLT)
The Book of Galatians, which is found in the New Testament, comes from a letter written by the Apostle Paul. Paul writes to the Galatians to help settle a divided issue in the Galatian Church: If the Galatians should give up their freedom in Christ in order to serve the Law of Moses once again? And in doing so, Paul uses the story of Abraham, who was alive during the time when Law of Moses was administered, to show how his faith in Christ was more justified than the decrees in the Law of Moses.
In this verse, Paul tells the Galatians (as well as us) that we harvest what we plant. In other words, helping those who have sinned, through humility and kindness, without falling into temptation, we are fulfilling God’s purpose in our lives. Not boasting about our work, because we are not that important than anyone else, makes us responsible for our own conduct. And most importantly, not getting tired from performing good deeds will reward us with a harvest of blessings in our lives.
There are benefits from each act, which Paul describes!
When we help one another, shouldering each other’s burdens, while pleasing the Lord, we are actually planting seeds of everlasting life in Heaven. So, when it does come time to harvest our crops, we will reap a harvest of blessings for ourselves and for others too. Remember what Paul says,
“Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful nature will harvest decay and death from that sinful nature. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit.”
So this week, plant seeds of everlasting life in Heaven. Help one another, so your harvest will be filled with blessings!
- Weekly Spiritual Digest: Do Not Criticize & Continue to Live for the Lord! (princesdailyjournal.com)
Manos Koundourakis is a Project Manager and Civil Engineer extraordinaire. Manos is from Greece and has twelve years of solid site experience on a variety of engineering projects, in both private and public sectors. His projects include but are not limited to:
- Commercial and home renovation and restoration
- Project management
- Design and construction from conception to implementation of architectural details
With his proven track record of delivering projects “on time and within budget,” Manos has successfully restored and refurbished private and public projects all over Greece.
While in Greece, he was appointed Site Manager for both J&P-Avax S.A and Ellaktor S.A. (two major construction companies in Greece) where he monitored and ensured the development of various projects (through their use of specifications); coordinated and supervised engineers, contractors, and workers; and used cost evaluation techniques and calculations to ensure that the projects’ costs were kept at a minimum without losing quality or efficiency.
His most cherished project was the “Athens Hilton” refurbishment project, which was used for the Athens Olympics in 2004.
Today, he is in Boston, Ma. where he is earning his Masters in Project Management at Northeastern University. He is fluent in English, French, and Greek. After he earns his Masters, he plans to seek a position in Project Management where he can continue his love for architecture and expand on his track record of delivering high quality engineering projects in both private and public sectors.
To recruit Manos for your next engineering project, you can contact him on Linkedin at www.linkedin.com/in/manoskoundourakis
- Saturday Morning Breakfast w/ Manos Koundourakis (princesdailyjournal.com)
It’s Monday, the beginning of a new week, and you need words of motivation to start your week off right.
This week’s words of motivation: Tie Your Shoes [The Correct Way]!
In this hilarious TED talk video, we see how one little detail can make all the difference in the world, especially when it comes to a life long skill that has been taught to us when we were little children: tying your shoes.
Terry Moore, founder of the Radius Foundation, is like all of us. We tie our shoes enough times in our livelihood that we do not care or worry about its appearances. But if it wasn’t for Terry’s close eye to detail towards his discomfort of “round nylon shoelaces,” then he would have never gained a lifelong lesson which would ultimately change his life [and others] for the better. Who would’ve thought that his embarrassing moment of not tying his shoes correctly [for 50 some odd years] would be broadcasted on the first ever TED talk video in the world of TED talks?
So this week, and before you walk out the door, Tie Your Shoes [The Correct Way]!
Pay close attention to details, or the little discomforts in your life, because you never know if that detail or discomfort will yield you great knowledge or rewards in the future!
To follow Terry, and his TED talks, go to: http://www.ted.com/speakers/terry_moore.html
And if you wish to learn more about Terry’s “Radius Foundation,” go to: http://radiusfoundation.org/
CNN will be ending the Piers Morgan show; A scuffle broke out at the Ukrainian parliament; Gas Prices in the US will rise to 12 cents; A new poll shows Americans think that President Obama is not respected among world leaders; Apple Devices are vulnerable to hackers; and EU leaders will debate on making the purchase of sex illegal. All this and more, please follow the links below.