by spacemanspiff, Fri Jan 30, 2009 at 11:05:58 AM EST
3 great essays up at the Moose
Denise Velez .
I have watched the Obama's now, since the early days of the campaign, and as they danced together at the inaugural balls to the strains of Beyoncé covering Etta James, "At Last", I mused about what we (as black American's and we as women of color) have finally achieved "at last".
When Reverend Lowery did the benediction earlier that day, his words echoed an old childhood schoolyard rhyme "if you're white you're all right, if you're brown stick around, if you're black stay back..."
Yes, we have the first POTUS of African descent. But that is not the focus of this diary. Of more significance for many women of color, we have a first couple, where the wife is darker in complexion than her spouse.
Much has been written about Barack Obama's mother being white, and Michelle Obama as a really black American. What I have not seen discussed are the social implications of the image they present to many in not only the African-American community, but to those of us who may also be from other communities of afro-descendancy (Puerto Rico, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Brazil, Jamaica etc), where skin-color gradations have historically had a significant relationship to social class, and where this relationship has applied specifically to women of color.
In the Motley Moose "Guest Blogger" series they have Malini Mehra.
Malini Mehra is the founder and chief executive of the Centre for Social Markets, an Indian non-profit that has initiated the country's first national mobilization effort on climate change. CSM's 'Climate Challenge India' campaign is driving a pro-active domestic response to climate change and seeking to propel the country into the ranks of global leadership on the issue. CSM's US-India leadership programme on climate change is building bridges between the two nations with a particular focus on engaging Indian Americans.
Speaking to the millions in America, but heard by billions around the world, President Barack Obama said:
"What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them - that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply."
Obama spoke of America, but he could have been speaking of the world. We are everywhere in need of renewal and hope. None more so than on the climate challenge where we need fresh vision and a politics that looks forwards not backwards. The stakes are so high that anything less than an audacious, global effort to reconcile our differences and make peace with the planet will fail humanity. We will not regret it in our parochial nationalisms as Indians or Americans, but as humans - as a species that failed itself, and condemned the rest.
This is why 2009 matters and why this year's UN Conference on Climate Change (COP15) in Copenhagen in December must not fail.
Everybody's favorite, sricki, is up with a new essay as well.
According to Reuters, U.S. Army suicide rates are at their highest since the military first began tracking them in 1980. With 128 soldiers having committed suicide in 2008, and 15 additional deaths still under investigation, this is the first time the number of military suicides has been higher than the adjusted rate of suicide in the general civilian population since Vietnam.
Hopefully the Obama administration will ensure that changes are made -- that the men and women who serve us so faithfully are protected both on duty and off. There is no way to eliminate depression, anxiety, and PTSD among our troops. Those are invisible wounds which will never be fully eradicated from their ranks. But the rate of suicide can be lowered with prompt and effective intervention. There is no reason the military can't provide more effective treatment to those who are suffering. There is no excuse for the lack of aid our veterans endure here at home.
And the sooner President Obama finds a way to safely bring our troops home, the more lives will be saved: both on and off the battlefield.
Stop by and chill.
Peace.UPDATE Hahahahahahaha! I love you too haters! Cheers!