Recently I’ve been thinking about Barack Obama, Henry Louis Gates, Van Jones, and Greenbridge.
When tension around race comes up, our society has a really difficult time differentiating between individual incidents of incivility and patterns of bias. South Carolina Rep. Joe Wilson thinks that an apology for his single act of disrespect is enough. But others see his “You Lie” comment towards the President to be part of a larger racial pattern questioning Obama’s authority. Henry Louis Gates saw being arrested in his own home in the light of a larger pattern of racial profiling. The police officer who arrested him thought he was just arresting a guy who threatened his authority.
Closer to home, Greenbridge and its developers continue to come under criticism for gentrifying Northside, and some attacks this summer called the Greenbridge developers racist. UNC-NOW and other Greenbridge critics see this project as a part of the larger pattern of African-American displacement in Chapel Hill. Not surprisingly, Greenbridge’s developers say they’re just one project impacting the neighborhood, and one that came relatively late to the gentrification party at that.
From Saturday's Herald-Sun/CHH: "President Obama's plan to give a televised speech to the nation's students Tuesday might be causing a ruckus in some locales.... But
Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools Superintendent Neil Pedersen has sent
a note encouraging principals and teachers to make Obama's speech
available to students Tuesday at noon if schedules permit. Obama plans to urge students to work hard, set goals and to take
responsibility for their educations. President George H.W. Bush gave a
similar back-to-school address in 1991 and so did President Ronald
President Obama believes that we, as Americans, have a responsibility to help our communities and fellow citizens PLEASE JOIN the Orange County Campaign for Change in supporting the YES WE CANS FOOD DRIVE to benefit the Interfaith Council (IFC) & Orange Congregations in Mission (OCIM)
Help collect food in your neighborhood, at your work place, among friends BRING ALL DONATIONS TO EITHER LOCATION (non perishable items only): The Carrboro Farmers Market (in the Free Speech Zone) Cup-A-Joe 120 W. King St. Hillsborough Both from 9:00 AM-12:00 PM, on February 28th (see www.mybarackobama.com for details)
I have been hearing about a lot of inauguration-related activities going on this weekend and through Tuesday. I'd rather not have them clog up the calendar, but I thought it would be helpful to list them all in one place. Here's what I know about so far, please post additional events and let us know how you're observing this landmark event.
Orange County Inaugural celebration and community gathering featuring live music, slam poetry, MLK tributes, dance party, local restaurant specials.
Talent includes renowned fiddler Joe Thompson, hip hop band "The Beast", slam poetry team "Sacrificial Poets," acoustic roots musicians "Mebanesville." More acts and activities confirming daily! Event organized by Orange County Campaign for Change.
Century Center - 5-10 p.m. (Free!)
Southern Rail Dance Party - 8 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. ($10 cover)
Donation of cans for "Yes We Cans" Project in exchange for access to restaurant discounts and specials.
More information: Craig Perrin - 415-218-7806
Sunday, January 18, 2009 - 12:00pm
Century Center (music, activities, tributes), Southern Rail (Dance Party)
Here is an update on what is happening locally, post-Obama campaign, among the folks who want to keep the spirit alive and help make change happen!
Last Sunday, there were three "House Parties" held around the County. One in Carrboro, another in North Carrboro and a third in Hillsborough. (I don't know the total attendance, I was at N. Carrboro and we must have had two dozen or more people.)
The Obama team and Democrats are acknowledging that an economic stimulus plan equal to 4%-5% of US GDP is needed. In other words 500-700 Billion dollars are needed for investing toward infrastructure as a means of creating jobs to stimulate the economy.
Having been very active during the Primary and my wife very active during the General Election, we went to lots of victory parties!
The omnipresent question was "What now?"
I met Stan at such a party and, being of like mind and sense of making something happen, he and I decided to answer that question. So, we met a couple of times and exchanged some email and phone calls and Stan wrote up a document explaining our ideas.
Orange County Campaign for Change Official Barack Obama Victory Party!
Tuesday, November 4 7:30 PM until...
Location: The Station at Southern Rail In Carrboro, across the parking lot from Weaver Street Market
-Hear from Orange County campaign staff -Watch it all unfold on big TVs -Kill time with drink specials -Piano favorites from Robert Griffin until the results start coming in!
New Orleans Style Brass Band Parade at 10PM!!! (Before final results come in!) Paraders: Bring your Obama signs, noisemakers, costumes, stilts, puppets, etc. We'll celebrate this amazing campaign and relieve our anxiety with a quick walk around town!