Monthly Archives: November 2014

A Black Friday Miracle

No.. No miraculous, unbelievable sales, just a shift in socio-political loyalties. It seemed miraculous.. To see the African American community break out of it’s Obama-trance. Some moments of honesty.

@CornelWest: Obama’s empty neutrality, moral bankruptcy and political cowardice is now undeniable to even his most loyal cheerleaders and boot-lickers!

@CornelWest: #Ferguson: The sad end of the Age of Obama

Of course, he doesn’t speak for the entire African American community, but he is a respected academic. His deceleration, should mean something. If we respect academia, the truth, and cultural context, West’s words hold a weight, one that shouldn’t be over looked. Is he far left? Yes, very far. But a pacifist and a Christian. There’s worse things to be. So, hear the guy out, is all I’m saying.

Our President said, the troubles in Ferguson—yes, troubles, what the hell else can you call them—are an avenue to a larger national debate.

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Photo via The White House

So, I did just that.

Follow Up: The Cogency

In my previous post I discussed discussing Ferguson with my fellow Americans and a Canadian. Now, a Psychiatric Social Worker.. A little old lady is being snarky. Our saga continues.

This was my response to Miller, an alleged comedian. Who’s platform is facebook. Who had called me stupid, upon me answering a very benign question, in a calm way.

Okay.

Miller:
Dude, you came with right wing bullshit talking points…what did you expect to happen
(“Dude”.. He’s so edgy.)

Right bullshit wing” talking points? It’s a puff piece from 2008. It was about McCulloch, the prosecutor, who this man never names. He’s attacking McCulloch as a racist, but when I point out he actively helped get the first black president get elected, it was called “bullshit”.

How is it is a right wing talking point? It’s just a fact. McCulloch is pretty mainstream. I was fucking asked my opinion you asshole. See the fucking question mark!?

————> ? <———– this warrants a response, I gave one you fucking moron.

Who asked me? A good natured Canadian. I’ve always been able to discuss these tough topics with civility with him. He may be a fake account, I don’t know. But this is how it transpired.

Canuck:

The gloating and the fact that right away people were siding with Wilson even tho we didnt have all the facts was pissing me off

Brown was dead…not injured…or wrongly jailed but he was dead.

Me:

I wish he wasn’t.

Canuck:

What I truly dispise is the systemic way of right after a black dude is shot the media is looking for dirt to put on that guy…to my canadian ass…thats sickening.

Me too, he probably knew I was frustrated myself. Not probably—definitely, I told him I was.

It wasn’t meant to be an ambush, but it felt like it at times. It devolved immediately.

Later an older lady said this:

I’m having a heart attack from the surprise.

Way it goes sometimes. Hope she’s okay.

Remeber white progressives, you’ve been asked not to speak on the matter. How ya feel about that, psychiatrist? They’ve basically told comics not to work. How’s that feel Ross Miller?

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What’s Your Fucking Point?

So, I got drawn into an international discussion about Ferguson. Someone, who I’d been familiar with “tagged me” into a post, I frankly didn’t care about. But this person, a Canadian I’ve mentioned before, in previous posts, is usually good for stimulating conversation.

His opener was:

Wow, Grant is a special kind of stupid, huh?

This is why you’re an idiot, Grant

From 2000-fucking-thousand miles away.

This was what it came down to, this question and about 30 others this person ignored. Me being stupid, racist, blind, a liar, and “not shit”— for not echoing the herd.

In the true spirit of understanding.

Is this getting good material for your standup? Do you think this will do well at the clubs? Will Mike Brown’s death bring you good stand up material? Glad you could capitalize on this tragedy.

Once, I dispensed with his narrative filled with fallacy, he reminded me he was comedian.

And Grant…this is my fucking stage! This is my page…and if you don’t like what I am posting and cannot come correct than shove it up your ass and move along.

You ain’t my fucking friend and I don’t need to suffer your ignorance and bullshit

Well, this is my blog, so, you’re going to be framed as an opportunistic, unoriginal asshole.

Then block or delete.. My shit is quite correct. This isn’t my first rodeo with sanctimonious progressive west coast assholes lecturing me on my state government and calling it a “debate”.

Oooohh yeah, now you’re just a guy trying to make a living as a comedian. An artist. And I’m bullying *you*. We know you’re creative and open minded, everyone is really impressed. You opened with calling me names and tell me to leave… Maybe you just suck at your fucking job? How about that?

This conversation wouldn’t go down like this in real life.

Then it got into political affiliation and Missouri Election Laws. Because I chose to reveal my familiarity with the election process and the local politics.

“What kind of bullshit is that? They don’t ask your political affiliation to work a polling station. What the fuck are you talking about?” – alleged comedian, Ross Miller

Called me a racist and a liar, a dozen times.

Yes, Mr Miller they do…
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Photo via The Missouri Secratary of State’s Office.

Is this a revolution starting? Has this place, St. Louis, been chosen? Is this where real revolutionaries dig in and start slugging it out with the true might of the American military apparatus? Lambs to the slaughter, believe it. This is not a machine designed to turn on it’s own. It’s just a machine that ensures our interests abroad

Well, I must say.. The larger ‘revolution’ picked a sorry spot to pick a fighting front. It’s facing actual combat vets in a vital American metropolis. Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty is this justification for warfare? No, it’s fucking not.

This felt like an ambush… Like, I was marked as a Missouri rube, who couldn’t speak for my state or community. That’s the real problem with the optics outside of St. Louis. Elitism and belief that anyone not completely calling for the immediate death of Darren Wilson, is complicit in some sort of grand conspiracy. It’s a reverse progressive Benghazi, they just won’t stop. “It has to be this narrative, it just has to be.” It’s almost like their mind can’t fathom anything else. He wanted my attention, well here it is:

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These were my parting words:

You’re talking about you’re pathetic stage, while I’m talking about my home. Would you do this to a Palestinian who opposed Hamas? Because that’s the moral equivalency touted everyday.. Same struggle. Blah. Blah. Blah.

He called me obsessed, like I some how was mesmerized by his comedic genius and it put me into a trance of seeking his approval, the nerve of these fucking people, really.

I corrected my typos, I’m soooo obsessed, I’m probably like Buffalo Bill.
Or I’m choosing to engage you while I’m bored at my in-laws enjoying my wonderful life.
You kept pushing with more and more hateful rhetoric, in the face of a cogent exchange between Stephane and I. You deserve everything you’ve received.
You haven’t answered one question. And this isn’t your stage, it’s an 8-lane highway of communication. Probably shouldn’t play in traffic Ross. It’s not a game to some.
I bet you love the Vice live-streams and think Bassem’s bombastic nonsense is insightful and real.

You made someone’s blog Mr. Miller, pat yourself on the back.

You are no different than the Al Sharpton’s of the world, only seeking to benefit from others misery. You’re apart of the professional grievance industry, Mr. Martin. You disgust me…

A Stagnant Movement

The Grand Jury decided not to indict Darren Wilson for the shooting of Michael Brown. Sparking a shocking reaction in St. Louis, and countless solidarity protest across the country. It was raw and angry.

I’m all for helping North County, I was before August. But stop pretending this one incident in Ferguson exposed so much. It didn’t. No one cared before—that’s the real tragedy—that’s the only thing that’s been exposed, people didn’t care what happened in the north part of St. Louis county.

Black lives do matter. Never met one serious person whose ever implied otherwise. I don’t know why it’s trending or how it became a hash tag, that implies a widely expected sentiment that black lives don’t matter—which is false and frankly ridiculous—but it is.

Think about it: if you knew who Dr. Gosnell was, his race, and what he did. You’d know that’s one of the stupidest social media campaign to date. It’s almost as stupid as gamergate.

It’s stupid, and I don’t use the word lightly, to say that no good working and caring relationship exist between races is disingenuous and flat out wrong.

Here’s a great example.

The St. Louis American introduced a new columnist. John W. Payne. It’s significant because in the midst of all the racial tensions the old and storied African American publication based in St. Louis made a bold move. Bringing in a white academic to commentate on black crime and incarceration.

Like, I know the guy…
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Hope on the Horizon

I was watching my African America friends watch Ferguson and one post popped out, it hash tagged: Don’t Get It Twisted. By a former a Basketball teammate. He’s successful in sales and coaches a youth basketball team. His dad’s a pastor. He’s an all around good guy.

It’s a real discussion with my real African American friends from the same place I knew John from, home.

I saw this written in response to a friends honest reaction Ferguson.

The more things change the more they stay the same.

At least now you know.

Here were my words of comfort.

Nah, there’s some good stuff happening. Some of us are noticing the real work.

Just my humble opinion. I speak because Tony and Brent were my teammates, on a team that was forced to deal with these issues, before the vocabulary existed to have the conversation. We had a good coach who taught us to get past the stupid things we had learned growing up in the sticks. We were lucky.

I once dropped a 6’8″, 380 pound dude for Brent [Brent Little, a great guy who lives in Chicago]. Ask Greg [Greg Hansborugh, Tyler Hansborough’s brother. Shout out to Snake Diesel true story] . (But that was basketball camp, this giant was pushing my teammates around so, I knocked the big bastard on his ass, people were stunned. Brent was my teammate, he was my brother on the court) This is serious stuff, though. We have to get past this. We have to see the people wanting real change as our countrymen, am I advocating violence? No. Our coach made me run 20 suicides, for the incident. When he ask me if it was worth it, I said “Yes”. I got punished for my stupid act of punching someone. I should have. However… That doesn’t mean that type of loyalty shouldn’t exist between the black and white American communities—most definitely on a higher, more mature level. It’s an opportunity for good change and an opportunity for idiots. It’s anyone’s guess… If I had to wager, I’d bet on good people rising to the occasion, moving forward.

I don’t mean to preach, but something needed to be said

Vigilance Isn’t Without Some Cause
Serious, nefarious, opportunist elements loom on the outskirts looking to use this for whatever radical cause they seem focused on. A tone has been set by some, one name that comes to mind is Bassem Masri.

@Buck Sexton: @GrantGambling is that the guy who has a rioter steal his cellphone out of his hand, and then tweeted “the cops did it” ?

Yes, Mr. Sexton he was.

@bassem_masri: We had 90k ppl watching us live good strat by police stealing my phone sending in crash dummies #ferguson

Is Bassem, “dangerous”? I don’t know. But I do know he bitched about his own freedom speech and ran journalist out of town twice. It’s not just his community. It’s a big region. It’s a big fucking place. Bassem does not speak for an entire community. He speaks for his lie-stream.

It’s still tense here, but like my close and personal friend John W. Payne “wrote: this has all been pretty mild.”

@AndrewKirell: A very thoughtful piece of perspective from a friend in St. Louis: https://t.co/JxxYcwkFO0

The movement is not stagnant, but bogged down by the same problems that plagued Zuccoti. The current scores of solidarity protest leaves one gob smacked.

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And in each and every place it’s the same

@hboulware: “Fuck the police!” “The police need to back off and shut up!” “WHY ARE THE POLICE NOT STOPPING THIS VIOLENCE?”

That’s the cries from the afflicted outsiders. I wish they’d hush. The people who live here really want to be about the business of moving on.

The Movement: The Second Act

I’ve known this contributor to the St Louis American, for a long time. The first time I met him, he walked to the batters box in little league without a helmet, wearing orange sunglasses—straight out of the Big Lebowski, Sabcheck style. I had to remind him to go get his helmet. That was our first conversation. Followed by many; he taught me what a joint was; he clarified Rolling Stones lyrics for me; he exposed me to his spectacularly superior education acquired at Washington University. He validated me as a person. I also had strong disagreements with Mr. Payne over Ferguson and how he went about handling a movement I felt very passionate about. (Partially why Ray Downs got mentioned in my last post) Downs wrote up a piece for the cannabis reform movement at the River Front Times.

Let it be known, any attempt to defame Mr Payne without facts and I’ll come at you like a fucking spider monkey. https://t.co/6VldaLvRV0

Believe what you will, I tweet with the real National Security (NatSec) community. I got vetted. I keep my mouth shut, that is why NatSec and CIA analyst follow me on the humble social medium of Twitter. It’s not an indication of my expertise, but rather an acknowledgment that I’ve learned to ask the right questions. This is a small example of an expression of expectance, from the NatSec community.

Geography
Mr. Payne is a Butler county man, those men, tend to have swagger. We always will. Mr. John Payne, is without a doubt a Butler County Man . I am not a Butler County man, I’m an American.

Just because I don’t like how he saw one topic doesn’t mean I wouldn’t take a rhetorical baseball bat to someone’s head over him.

I know John wants a change to the system that traps young, poor (mostly black) people in a strange bureaucratic servitude.

I want that too.

Say we can get a statewide decrim, it still leaves the precedent set by stop and frisk out of NY. What we need is a police/citizen tracking system.

A public system that gives a corresponding tracking number for the public and the “evidence” confiscated by Leo. Say 1/8 is decrimed, anything over can still be seized in NY(?), the same would probably go down in St. Louis. With a tracking system, corruption would be harder. The same with cash or property.

Doesn’t have to be made public, but at least council for the accused party should be privy to the tracking of any asset forfeiture.

Am I crazy?

I don’t think so…

I don’t think Mr. Payne is crazy either, just dedicated to a cause, his cause.