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Showing posts from May, 2009

Michael Eric Dyson vs President Obama

Author & commentator Michael Eric Dyson swung through the Bay Area the other day to do a book reading at Oakland's Eastbay Science Church. He came by Hard Knock Radio on KPFA and blew up the spot by talking about his friend President Barack Obam a.. He took him to task on the issue of race and his response to Black folks. Here's what Dyson had to say.

"Save The Parkway Theater" Community Meeting Sunday, May 31st

More at | Follow me on Twitter! | Get my widget! The Parkway Theater's last day of operation was March 22, 2009, and while it seemed this Oakland institution would be a thing of the past, the undying sprit of a group of Oaklanders and the participation of thousands of members of the community (and the World, with former-Oaklanders and current Parkway fans overseas too) have kept the dream of reopening the unique theater alive. In case,you missed the lastest news, Carolyn Jones of The SF Chronicle broke the story of a "midwestern group of investors" called the Motion Picture Heritage Company (MPHC) and their plan to buy the Parkway Theater building from the landlords and revive the movie business that was within it. Patsy Eagan's blog OaklanderOnline tells us the group came to discover the Parkway via the efforts of Parkway Programming Director Will “The Thrill” Viharo, who presented the I Like the Parkway site to Bill Dever, the representati

Sotomayor's Life Experience Is To Be Celebrated - By William Wong

William Wong With President Obama’s nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court, we are hearing from certain quarters (Republicans, conservatives, some white guys) complaints about the judge’s invocation of her Puerto Rican cultural heritage as an important part of who she is and why she might make a good Supreme Court Justice. Moreover, President Obama made a big deal of Judge Sotomayor’s personal story, along with her stellar legal credentials, when he announced her nomination to the nation’s highest court. This matter of her cultural heritage and background – as well as the fact that she is a woman – re-animates a continuing debate in America about power and equal opportunity. It’s often labeled “identity politics,” which is a battering ram in the quarters that are whining about Judge Sotomayor’s invocation of her cultural heritage to pummel those of us from the historic margins of American life – women, and non-white ethnic minorities. Frankly, I’ve wearied

For the Love of Marriage and the Hatred of Gays

// For the Love of Marriage and the Hatred of Gays By Davey D I am always amazed at the type of excuses one makes and the type of reverting to hate that one takes when it comes to the issue of homosexuality and in recent days Gay Marriage. Over the past year since Prop 8 was introduced on the California ballot, outlawing Gay Marriage, but worded in such a way as to let people think they were 'protecting marriage' I have had more than my fair share of spirited discussions that have resulted in one too many people screaming and shouting and really getting bent out of shape. The usual argument that's put forth is one steeped in religion. People wanna quote Leviticus , Mark, Romans and every other book as if a few quotes from the Bible should suddenly be the final word when they themselves have ignored the demands of those quotesthat apply specifically to them and their own behavior before and after the passages that referred to man sleeping with man. I tell you its

The California Supreme Court's Illogical Prop 8 Decision

  More at | Follow me on Twitter! | Get my widget! On YouTube Tuesday, May 26, 2009 will go down as an eventful San Francisco day, sunny, and yet dark, and one that saw a lot of people marginalized who didn’t want to be. But then, who does. Before I turn to who said what, and who got arrested, I stick my head right into the belly of the beast, the California Supreme Court’s decision. Today, in first upholding Proposition 8, the voter-approved initiative to make same-sex marriage illegal that passed in November 2008, and yet protecting the 18,000 same-sex marriages that were done before the passage of the initiative, the California Supreme Court successfully stood logic on its head. I’ve just read the Court’s entire 167-page decision, and while I understand the reasons given by the majority of justices (six supporting the decision, one against it and even then the six judges that agreed were not perfect in their union) I’m concerned with the logic behind t

Happy Memorial Day! Thank A Soldier Today

  More at | Follow me on Twitter! | Get my widget! YouTube , Yahoo , MySpace , Metacafe , DailyMotion , , StupidVideos , Sclipo and Viddler I went to my stepfather's burial place today. Even though I was really ill, I forced myself to go and place flowers at his grave site as I've made it a habit to visit him on Memorial Day each year. He fought in World War II. But this time, I took my biological father's burial flag with me. Both my father and stepfather died in 2005. To some who are anti-war, the title of this video-blog will upset them. It should not. I'm against war and always have been, but the reality of my life is that both my late father and stepfather fought in World War II, and in my father's case, Zenophon Abraham of is his name (he lives in Chicago), I am the proud owner of his neatly folded burial flag and two bullets wrapped in them. I've never unraveled it. Chester Harding Yerger III of Oakland is my

Rosie Rios May Be U.S. Treasurer; Former Oakland Economic Development Head

  More at | Follow me on Twitter! | Get my widget!   Rosie Rios, who was one famously known as the economic development division head sacked by then-Oakland Mayor Jerry Brown in 2003 as part of a "great purge" of Oakland economic development officials friendly to then-City Manager Robert Bobb's support of a downtown Oakland baseball stadium, has resurfaced in an excellent way this year as the person selected by President Barack Obama to be the United States Treasurer, subject to Senate confirmation. The U.S. Treasurer reports to the Secretary of The Treasury Tim Geithner on matters of coinage, currency circulation, and related issues, but her signature also will appear on U.S. currency. In 2001, Rios was appointed Director of the Oakland Economic Development and Redevelopment Divisions   by then-Oakland Redevelopment Agency head Bill Claggett.  Before her stint with Oakland, Rios served as an excellent and well-regarded economic development direc Shows Stimulus Money Applied For Oakland

As of today, there's a brand new website active called "" and it has a list of funds applied for by the City of Oakland though "The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009" but the website itself is disappointing. I'll get into the reasons why in a new post. For now, visit .

Carl Raybon Jr. sentenced 57 years + for killing Patricia Ann Brackins

Man sentenced 57 years to life for killing girlfriend - Inside Bay Area : “OAKLAND — Carl Raybon Jr., found guilty of killing his girlfriend with at least six strikes to the head with a hammer, was sentenced to 57 years to life in prison Friday by a judge who said the murder was a "brutal crime." "He took a hammer and beat her, a woman that was trying to help him," Alameda County Superior Court Judge C. Don Clay said. "This really is brutal. This really is a brutal crime." Raybon, 45, was convicted in February of first-degree murder in the killing of Patricia Ann Brackins, 54, a preschool teacher who allowed Raybon to live with her after he promised to change his life. Brackins met Raybon several months before the murder when he was homeless and looking for a place to stay, according to police. He did some work for her, and she allowed him to stay at her home on Ritchie Street in East Oakland.” - This is terrible to say the least! From this report, she wa

Bay to Breakers - A Race To Remember

  More at | Follow me on Twitter! | Get my widget! My Bay to Breakers Sunday started unlike any in the past 19 or more years and it was even better than the "KGO coolness" of the last seven years. From 2002 to 2007, I'd get up at 4:30 in the morning to meet my friend Beth at the KGO Radio "Morning Stretch" held in the lobby of One Market Street before the start of the run. The basic advantage of being with KGO Radio was the free coffee and orange juice in the morning, plus we were at the start of the line, right where I could get hit by flying tortillas and giant beach balls. Sadly, in 2008 KGO Radio pulled its sponsorship of the event but we still managed a front-line position. This year was just plain different. My constant trips between California and Georgia where my Mom lives made planning for the B2B difficult this time around. I'm not complaining, it's just the fact of family life right through here. But just by askin

Get The Zennie62 Widget Made By Steve Kloft!

  More at | Follow me on Twitter! Right out of the blue, I get this email from my friend Steve Kloft, who's an established Internet marketing guru, announcing he's created a widget containing links to my postings, my main blog, my Twitter tweets, and my YouTube videos! Steve, thanks a million! That makes up for the 600 mb Bay to Breakers videos I'm still uploading, the nutso cyberstalkers , and all the crap I've had to deal with that comes with just expressing my opinion! But as I've said before, there are good people out there, fortunately I know them and they have away of just appearing when you need a boost: Steve's an example. Here's the widget: Get the Zennie Abraham widget and many other great free widgets at Widgetbox ! You can get your own copy at this link: And thanks again, Steve! That was a bolt out of the blue!

California Election Day Is Today: Just Vote NO!

Ok.  Today's the day of the California Special Election.  Want an easy answer to the question "What to do?"  Just vote no across the board: Propositions that are on the May 19, 2009, Statewide Special Election Ballot Proposition 1A State Budget. Changes California Budget Process. Limits State Spending. Increases "Rainy Day" Budget Stabilization Fund.  - (Vote No: we don't need a spending limit.  What we need is the ability to direct money where it's needed, when it's needed. ) Proposition 1B Education Funding. Payment Plan.  NO: could result in lower education spending.   Proposition 1C Lottery Modernization Act. NO.  Reduces education-directed funds. Proposition 1D Protects Children's Services Funding. Helps Balance State Budget.  NO. Takes money away from Children Services.  Proposition 1E Mental Health Services Funding. Temporary Rea

BART Airport Connector: Just Build The Damn Thing!

  More at | Follow me on Twitter! Coliseum BART Station rendering with connector When BART was opened in 1972 one of the first station stops was at the "Coliseum", a station called Coliseum BART for the well-known sports complex. Almost from the day the station opened many asked why the BART line didn't have a spur to serve Oakland International Airport. These questions continued through the 70s, 80s, and then in the 90s a group of Oakland business leaders strongly pushed for "an airport connector" of some design. It was listed as an objective by the 500 Oaklanders who attended "Oakland Sharing The Vision" or as a few friends liked to call it, "sharing the ham sandwich." Then when BART approved the San Francisco International Airport extention, a number of people in Oakland (including myself) just hit the ceiling. Why them and not us? At any rate, there was always a constituency for the project and it was neve

The Blog Report TV Show: Josh Wolf; Parkway Theater's Last Day

  More at | Follow me on Twitter! YouTube , and Sclipo Wow, sorry I was away, but I spent all of Thursday traveling from Atlanta to San Francisco, then covering Bay to Breakers events, and finally just taking time off. Pretty fried, frankly. But the World turns on. Each Saturday, my new television show is on. It's called The Blog Report With Zennie62 and features the use of my video blogs in a weekly 30-minute format broadcast and co-produced by CoLoursTV in Denver. The start time is 3:30 PM Pacific Time, 6:30 PM Eastern Time and the show is replayed at 11:30 PM and 2:30 PM respecfully. Then it is replayed on Sunday at 12 noon pacific and 3 PM eastern. No TV?, go to . The third installment of The Blog Report with Zennie62 features the introduction of a new documentary film made by Sierra Choi and about SF Bay Area journalist Josh Wolf. I met Josh and Sierra in 2006 when both was working for The Peralta Community College District&#

American Idol Adam Lambert, Britney Spears Attacked On Stage. Why?

  More at | Follow me on Twitter! Not too long ago in Western culture it seemed we had this mostly unwritten rule that when a performer was at work, we didn't rush the stage to be with them or follow them around, unless of course they asked us to. Well, in this Internet age the act of rushing the stage and stalking has become all too commonplace, with the latest victim being American Idol star Adam Lambert; pop culture icon Britney Spears faced the same incident just two weeks before. And the act of stage rushing isn't limited to popular singers on television; a duo named Matt & Kim from Brooklyn were rushed at the annual multimedia event "South by Southwest" (or SXSW) in March. Who's next, Susan Boyle? In Spears' case the stage crasher, 20 year-old Kyle King , was a man who was whisked off and arrested by security after Britney let out a scream. By contrast, Lambert laughed the whole deal off - you can hear him - as authorit

Boxer Demands Obama Pick A Woman For Supreme Court

  More at | Follow me on Twitter! Like other supporters, I received this email letter from U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer, but this one was pointed right at one of my favorite subjects: "Who should be Justice David Souter's replacement on the Supreme Court?" After not much stewing on the matter, I would guess, Senator Boxer wants it officially known: President Obama's choice must be a woman and she's taking to the Internets to make it known. I still favor Kathleen Sullivan for the job so no harm there; this is what Senator Boxer wrote: Dear Zenophon, Women make up 51% of our nation's population. Yet only 17% of the seats in Congress are held by women. Only 3% of corporate CEOs are women. And just one out of nine Supreme Court justices is a woman. President Obama can change that. Send an email to the White House now — and urge President Obama to nominate a woman to the U.S. Supreme Court! Since Sandra Day O'Connor's retirem

The Uptown And Parking: What Happens When There's No Plan

Ok. A lot of people have been writing that they don't want to see surface parking at the lot next to the Fox Theater in the Uptown District. The tower Forest City Development was to build is going to be stalled in this economy for a good, long time. So we have a lot. Yuck. But the reason we have that, and not an alternative plan beyond it, and a lot of "stuff" from staff is that we don't have an overall development plan and regulations specifically for the entire Uptown Area; regulations that could govern signage, sidewalk design, and transportation. We've allowed the area to just sort of grow with piecemeal development projects as opposed to a full, overall plan. Don't blame me folks; I pushed for one long ago, but lost that battle too. What to do about the lot? Well, we could have a party on it! Seriously. Why not have a good, old fashioned Saturday public potluck right out there on that land, just to show that people will actually walk to s

San Jose Mayor's "Millions" Comment; Forget The A's

San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed can kiss the Oakland A's goodbye! Mayor Reed opened up and let fly the one sentence Lew Wolff and Major League Baseball don't want to hear: "Make us millions" or words to that effect, and "pay for your own stadium" or words to that effect. I don't know what the guy was smoking but look, I want some. What the heck, they'll probably legalize it anyway! The bottom line truth is in this recession the A's want someone to pay for the stadium now, and they will kick in money when the economy gets better. That "someone" is the government, because the Athletics sure don't have the money to do it and have lost over $24 million on the effort to date. After all that, they can't be hungry to build a privately financed stadium at all, regardless of their statements now or next week beyond this post. The Oakland A's are counting on a city to get stimulus money, but they'll have to stand in line behin

Beer By BART Interesting But Leaves Out Places

Greetings from Georgia, where I'm visiting my Mom. (Humid here.) I ran across a cool website called Beer By BART and it has some rather interesting listings but what's more curious is what was left out of the website. But first, what is it? It's a simple site that you can use to find where to go to get beer near a BART Station. In Oakland's Rockridge District, for example, the site lists just two places: Ben and Nick's and Barclay's and that's it. In reality, there's The Hut just across from Ben and Nick's and closer to BART than Barclay's, as well as Zachary's Pizza which is on the way to Ben and Nick's. So why those two made the cut's a wonder to me. Berkeley BART? Same problem. List just Jupiter and Triple Rock, forgetting "Downtown" which is on the way. What is this, the anti-yuppie beer site? Well, visit the site and give Steve Shapiro & Gail Ann Williams your views. Regardless of the omits, it'

TV Show "The Blog Report" Features Oakland's Young Politicos

  More at | Follow me on Twitter! Last weekend's installment of "The Blog Report with Zennie62" features the 16th District Delegate Election that was held in Alameda in January. The show segment, which is shown here, covers the election process and why its important to the political future of the Democratic Party in the Bay Area. But the real stars of the show are Oakland's young political activists who are bringing a new energy to the scene here. East Bay Young Democrats President Frieda Edgette, union leader Dan Rush, and Peralta Community College Trustee Abel Guillen are just some of the faces interviewed in the second Episode of "The Blog Report." Personally, I think Frieda Edgette's the one to watch. The leader of the East Bay Young Dems and " MixitUp East Bay " has a unique combination of energy, intelligence, empathy and direction to rise to the level of congressional representative or senator, and I'm not

Is Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums Firing His Chief Of Staff?

I'm getting a bunch of emails on the happenings in the Oakland Mayor's Office just days after my decision to expell the bad food that was in me: dealing with Oakland's mess of a sports politics situation, of which the Oakland Athletics - not Mayor Dellums - have created. The latest news is David K. Chai, Dellums Chief of Staff is on his way out and possibly but at this point not certain that Dellums' executive assistant Marisol Lopez would take the top spot. One email described the situation like this: his (Dellums') choices for COS (chief of staff) (wonderful at first with Dan Boggan, then unproductive with David Chai, and now completely disorienting with Marisol Lopez his most likely choice) are distancing him from even his own, most loyal supporters. The emails have also allowed me to see why our current Sports and Entertainment Task Force was being undermined by Dellums' dealings to create a new baseball task force: no consistent mayor's staff conta