Friday, May 27, 2005

A bust on my street today

I have lived in the city all my life and I live right across the street from a high school. I used to go to that same high school and have observed things that have occurred probably since I've attended that school. This was an outrageous situation to say the least and it is unfortunate that so many of our young people put themselves in this position.

I was starting the sprinklers out front when I saw a group of young men congregating near a vehicle. I had to go meet some one at the L so I was able to check out what was going on. All these young men had their hands on the top of the car. This was a search by some plain clothed cops. As I walk by one of them found something, a bag, which he summarily throws onto the hood of the trunk. He then prepares to cuff one of the kids and he's making a fuss about is. Another cop being a drama queen announces that every one of the guys (there were about 5 or 6) were going to jail.

I didn't stick around to figure out what happened, but it did. As I walked by I saw that apparently the police made a special trip across the street didn't even change directions. Something was up apparently. I also know that some of these kids park across the street before they go to class, they wait until the last minute before the get into the building and it is possible that they are engaging in something they have no business (such as smoking the weed).

In any case this is an unfortunate incident amongst many in the big city. Expecially living across the street of a big city high school. As for the young guys, I hope they take this as a learning experience. I also understand that if you're caught with this non-sense that the penalties may be stiffer.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

National Urban League

I was looking at the National Urban League website. I like what it stands for. I especially like their strategy that were presented in their mission statement. Here are the particular points in their entirety...

Our (Nat'l Urban League) Strategy
The Urban League employs a five point strategy, tailored to local needs, in order to implement the mission of our movement.

Education and Youth Empowerment: Ensuring that all of our children are well educated and prepared for economic self-reliance in the 21st century through college scholarships, early childhood literacy, Head Start and after care programs.

Economic Empowerment:Empowering all people in attaining economic self-sufficiency through job training, good jobs, homeownership, entrepreneurship and wealth accumulation.

Health and Quality of Life Empowerment: Working to build healthy and safe communities to eliminate health disparities through prevention, healthy eating, fitness, as well as ensuring access and complete access to affordable healthcare for all people.

Civic Engagementand Leadership Empowerment: Empowering all people to take an active role in determining the direction, quality of life, public policy and leadership in their communities by full participation as citizens and voters, as well as through active community service and leadership development.

Civil Rights and Racial Justice Empowerment: Promoting and ensuring our civil rights by actively working to eradicate all barriers to equal participation in the all aspects of American society, whether political, economic, social, educational or cultural.


The first four point I could understand the last one on civil rights would lose me. Right now I think that should be the least of our concerns. Not to blow that off, however, I want to see black children value an education. I want to see more black entrepreneurs. I want us to get healthier. And my emphasis is on knowing our leadership and what they do and not to blindly follow them down any path. This goes for politicians and ministers.

Friday, May 20, 2005

I've missed ST:TNG

You know the final episode of Enterprise got me a little nostalgic for Star Trek: The Next Generation. The final episode was pretty much a holodeck representation of Enterprise Captain Johnathan Archers final mission before he must give a speech marking the founding of the United Federation of Planets. Two of my favorite characters were seen in this episode Commander William T. Riker and Counselor Deanna Troi.

I've knocked TNG in recent years. I had discovered Deep Space 9 and I consider that superior in some ways. But if it wasn't for TNG I would never have been interested in Star Trek at all. I saw one of my favorite TNG episodes on Spike this past week Devil's Due. That was just a fun episode.

I remember that for probably the last three or so seasons of TNG that I would faithfully watch the first run current episodes on Saturdays at 6PM and again on Sundays at 10:30 (following that at 11:30 on Sundays was the Original Star Trek). Then the previous seasons would be seen during the week everyday at 6PM as well. I kind of enjoyed the early seasons particularly seasons 1 & 2. The style seems to have changed permanently by season 3.

Finally when I discovered Star Trek I was in the 6th grade. After that I started to acquire the books and the movies from the original crew. I've been hooked although I've disliked Voyager and I'm disappointed Enterprise has been cancelled. Hopefully within two years, there will be more Star Trek for now I'd be content with what has already been made. In time I'd just love to get me the DVD collection of episodes.

Friday, May 13, 2005

Enterprise ends it's four year run

The final episode of Star Trek Enterprise aired tonight. It was a sweet episode. I liked the holodeck sequences. Of course I question the usage of Deanna Troi and Commander Riker in this episode. They didn't look they way they had looked in the last two seasons of the series. In fact there are those who complain about Johnathan Frakes' (He plays Riker) weight. I liked how they ended the episode and it is too bad that there won't be any new ones for a while let alone another season.

To relay some news a Star Trek movie is in the works as I type this. It may be out next year. It's going to be a prequel. Let's just see how this develops. Really I was hoping for an Enterprise movie.

It's safe to say regardless that the Star Trek franchise is on hiatus for now. The time for that was after Voyager. There were a lot of people who disliked Enterprise, but I think this was a worthwhile project. I'm grateful for being able to support Enterprise.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Legalites

Everything these days is about legalities. Even homework is about the legalities. Mainly plagiarizing. So one such sights as Brain-Terminal and some of these vlogs that I've discovered. There are some legalities to look at.

From Ryanne's Video Blog at the bottom is a link to a site talking about Creative Commons Licenses. The page is very simple as you'll see but basically this one is free to distribute, copy and display a work however they cannot use it for any commercial purposes. They must credit the creator of the work and they may not make any alterations of any kind. Of course one has to get permission to do any of these things.

Here's the link to the site that has explained it perfectly.

Creative Commons Deed

Creative Commons Legal Code (The full license)

Creative Commons Homepage

Sunday, May 01, 2005

It's up to parents to close achievement gap

Mary Mitchell has column which towards the end alludes to the achievement gap. Apparently blacks don't do well on the whole in schools. Me personally, I think black depend too much on public schools. If the public schools are terrible, what is the public officials answer typically, more resources for the public schools.

Don't think for a second I'm against public schools. I've been to public schools all my life and I've never been at the best ones. However, I've heard the propaganda points that if public education is cut there will be problems. When I was in the 8th grade I had this teacher who said better hope the Republicans don't get elected because they will cut public education. Yet somehome more money for the schools is the best solution.

Attending a class there was a student presentation on education funding. The system seems unfair. The more income in a particular community the better the public schools. Ideally there should be more equity. The poorer community don't have the income therefore are their schools going to be better funded. Sometimes I'd have to agree that maybe we should just destroy the public schools and start over. It would be the right thing to do for our children.

Now there is one more important problem to attack. The role of the parents. I'll be honest as I got older I didn't like how my parents would butt in when it came to school. However that is something I'd do when I get to have kids. I want my kids to do well and will be sure of that. Their routine will be one that I help devise. But parental responsibility is very important without it can our kids survive academia.

When I was in high school a parent came to school and was arguing with my African American History teacher about the fact that he was picking on her daughter. She was threatening to pull her daughter out of his divison (homeroom if you will). Isn't there more to worry about than that, perhaps he was picking on her because of her grades. I can definitely see why if her grades were suffering because of it, but it is possible that this girl's mother didn't know the whole story.

The point is parent should worry about their children's performance and take an active interest in their achievement. Who knows what their kids will be if we help them make it worth the effort. And to hell with the idea that academic achievement is not a black person's trait.

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