At The Big Picture, it is Black History Month every second of every minute of every hour of every day of every week of every month of every year.
|THE YEAR 1998 MARKS THE 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS.|
Searching under the heading of "riots", "Oklahoma", and "Tulsa" in current editions of the World Book Encyclopedia, there is conspicuously no mention whatsoever of the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921, and this omission is by no means a surprise, or a rare case. The fact is, one would also be hard-pressed to find documentation of the incident, let alone an accurate accounting of it, in any other "scholarly" reference or American history book.
That's precisely the point that noted author, publisher and orator Ron Wallace, a Tulsa native, sought to make nearly five years ago when he began researching this riot, one of the worst incidents of violence ever visited upon people of African decent. Ultimately joined on the project by Jay Wilson of Los Angeles, the duo found and compiled indisputable evidence of what they now describe as "a black holocaust in America."
The date was June 1, 1921, when "Black Wallstreet," the name fittingly given to one of the most affluent all-black communities in America, was bombed from the air and burned to the ground by mobs of envious whites. In a period spanning fewer than 12 hours, a once thriving 36-black business district in Northern Tulsa lay smoldering-a model community destroyed, and a major African-American economic movement resoundingly defused.
The night's carnage left some 3,000 African Americans dead, and over 600 successful businesses lost. Among these were 21 churches, 21restaurants, 30 grocery stores and two movie theaters, plus a hospital, a bank, a post office, libraries, schools, law offices, a half dozen private airplanes and even a bus system. As could have been expected, the impetus behind it all was the infamous Ku Klux Klan, working in consort with ranking city officials, and many other sympathizers.
In their self-published book, Black Wallstreet: A Lost Dream, and its companion video documentary, Black Wallstreet: A Black Holocaust In America!, the authors have chronicled for the very first time in the words area historians and elderly survivors what really happened there on that fateful summer day in 1921 and why it happened. Wallace similarly explained to me why this bloody event from the turn of the century seems to have had a recurring effect that is being felt in predominately black neighborhoods even to this day.
The best description of "Black Wallstreet", or "Little Africa" as it was also known, could be to liken it to a mini-Beverly Hills. It was the golden door of the black community during the early 1900s, and it proved that African Americans had successful infrastructure. That's what Black Wallstreet was all about. The dollar circulated 36 to 100 times, sometimes taking a year for currency to leave the community. Now in 1995, a dollar leaves the black community in 15 minutes. As far as resources, there were Ph.D.'s residing in Little Africa, black attorneys and doctors. One doctor was Dr. Berry who owned the bus system. His average income was $500 a day, a hefty pocket change in 1910.
During that era, physicians owned medical schools. There were also pawn shops everywhere, brothels, jewelry stores, 21 churches, 21 restaurants, and two movie theaters. It was a time when the entire state of Oklahoma had only two airports, yet six blacks owned their own planes. It was a very fascinating community. The area encompassed over 600 businesses and 36 square blocks with a population of 15,000 African-Americans. And when the lower-economic Europeans looked over and saw what the black community created, many of them were jealous.
When the average student went to school on Black Wallstreet, he wore a suit and tie because of the morals and respect they were taught at a young age. The mainstay of the community was to educate every child. Nepotism was the one word they believed in. And that's what we need to get back to in 1995.
The main thoroughfare was Greenwood Avenue, and it was intersected by Archer and Pine Streets. From the first letters in each of those three names, you get G - A - P, and that's where the renowned R&B music group The Gap Band got its name. They're from Tulsa.
Black Wallstreet was a prime example of the typical black community in America that did businesses, but it was in an unusual location. You see, at the time, Oklahoma was set aside to be a black and Indian state. There were over 28 black townships there. One third of the people who traveled in the terrifying "Trail of Tears" along side the Indians between 1830 to 1842 were black people. The citizens of this proposed Indian and black state chose a black governor, a treasurer from Kansas named McDade. But the Ku Klux Klan said that if he assumed office that they would kill him within 48 hours.
A lot of blacks owned farmland, and many of them had gone into the oil business. The community was so tight and wealthy because they traded dollars hand-to-hand, and because they were dependent upon one another as a result of marrying into the Indian population; and 40 acres and a mule' and with that came whatever oil was later found on the properties.
Just to show you how wealthy a lot of black people were, there was a banker in the neighboring town who had a wife named California Taylor. Her father owned the largest cotton gin west of the Mississippi [River]. When California shopped, she would take a cruise to Paris every three months to have her clothes made. There was also a man named Mason in nearby Wagner county who had the largest potato farm west of the Mississippi. When he harvested, he would fill 100 boxcars a day. Another brother not far away had the same thing with a spinach farm. The typical family then was five children or more, though the typical farm family would have 10 kids or more who made up the nucleus of the labor.
On Black Wallstreet, a lot of global business was conducted. The community flourished from the early 1900s until June 1, 1921. That's when the largest massacre of non-military Americans in the history of this country took place, and it was lead by the Ku Klux Klan. Imagine walking out of your front door and seeing 1,500 homes being burned. It must have been amazing.
Survivors we interviewed think that the whole thing was planned because during the time that all of this was going on, white families with their children stood around the borders of their community and watched the massacre, the looting and everything-much in the same manner they would watch a lynching.
In my lectures I ask people if they understand where the word "picnic" comes from. It was typical to have a picnic on a Friday evening in Oklahoma. The word was short for "pick a nigger" to lynch. They would lynch a black male and cut off body parts as souvenirs. This went on every weekend in this country, and it was all across the country. That's where the term really came from.
The riots weren't caused by anything black or white. It was caused by jealousy. A lot of white folks had come back from World War I and they were poor. When they looked over into the black communities and realized that black men who fought in the war had come home heroes-that helped trigger the destruction. It cost the black community everything, and not a single dime of restitution-no insurance claims-has been awarded the victims to this day. Nonetheless, they rebuilt. We estimate, that 1,500 to 3,000 people were killed and we know that a lot of them were buried in mass graves all around the city. Some were thrown into the river. As a matter of fact, at 21st street and Yale Avenue, where there now stands a Sears parking lot, that corner used to be a coal mine. They threw a lot of the bodies into the shafts.
Black Americans don't know about this story because we don't apply the word "holocaust" to our struggle. Jewish people use the word holocaust all the time. White people use the word holocaust. It's politically correct to use it. But we black folks use the word, people think we're being cry babies or that we're trying to bring up old issues. No one comes to our support.
In 1910, our forefathers and mothers owned 13 million acres of land at the height of racism in this country, so the Black Wallstreet book and videotape prove to the naysayers and revisionists that we had our act together. Our mandate now is to begin to teach our children about our own, ongoing black holocaust. They have to know when they look at our communities today that we don't come from this.
To order a copy of Black Wallstreet, contact:
Dularon Entertainment, Inc.
P. O. Box 2702
Tulsa, Oklahoma, 74149
or call 1-(800)-682-7975.
Atlanta, GA(OTW)-Noted historian and activist John Henrik Clarke will be buried in Columbus, GA Saturday. Funeral services will be held at the Gethsemane Baptist Church. Clarke died last Thursday of an apparent heart attack.
Two black men, wrongfully convicted 30 years ago, received $500,000 each from the state of Florida. Freddie Pitts and Wilbert Lee were convicted by all-white juries of murdering two white gas-station attendants in 1963 in Port St. Joe. The convictions were thrown out after a white man admitted to the murders, but during a retrial, the confession was ruled inadmissible and Pitts and Lee were convicted again. After spending nine years on death row, they were pardoned in 1975. Legislation to compensate them, introduced during every session since 1977, finally passed this year.
Source: The Christian Science Monitor, July 14, 1998.
What You Don't Know... Info provided by iWarfare.com
Insurers placing Y2K exclusions (Journal Record; 07/07/98) Imagine you're the captain of the Titanic, and you're 20 feet away from that iceberg. Suddenly your insurance agent comes bounding up to the bridge to add just one thing to your policy: a provision excluding coverage if you hit an iceberg. That, says a spokesman for the Massachusetts Division of Insurance, is in essence what the insurance industry appears to be trying to do in the face of a giant iceberg ahead -- the Year 2000 computer bug. Property and casualty insurers are beginning to fear that the price tag for Y2K litigation could rival the ruinous costs the industry incurred in the cases of asbestos and environmental exposure. Insurers are quietly trying to get out front of the problem. Virtually unnoticed, the industry has received approval in about 40 states for new language that could exclude coverage for losses associated with Year 2000 problems in most new or renewed policies. The exclusions deal mainly with coverage for businesses, but also affect some homeowners' policies. The Insurance Services Offices in New York, which develops policies and policy language for the industry, began filing the exclusions with regulators last year; a number of companies also have filed exclusions. The industry says the exclusions are needed to clarify what is covered and what is not in products from general liability insurance to business interruption coverage. Insurers say coverage for Y2K problems has never been reflected in premiums. "The policies were never intended to cover this exposure," says Emily Canelo, a senior vice president for Zurich Re (North America) in New York, a reinsurance company.28 June
The Y2K bug refers to the concern that many software programs will crash with the coming of the millennium. Because these programs store dates as two digits, they can't distinguish between, for example, the years 2000 and 1900. At issue is what happens if the factories can't run or offices can't open because of the Y2K defect. Can a business owner bring a suit against the software maker, a distributor, or the consultants who recommended the program? Who pays for the loss of business while your company is shut down? Canelo says the courts stuck insurers with the bills for asbestos and environmental cleanup and the industry does not want to let that happen again. She objects to the Titanic analogy: "Would an insurer insure a burning building?" The problem, say industry critics, is that the industry wants to exclude everything that moves. Then if businesses and consumers have to buy extra coverage for Y2K problems at this late date, it is going to be prohibitively expensive. Can you imagine, after all, how much it would cost to insure that burning building? Laurence Eisenstein, a partner in the Washington firm Swidler & Berlin, doesn't think insurance companies are going to be able to make exclusions stick even if regulators approve them. The insurance business is just too competitive, he says. Massachusetts is one of a handful of states that have not approved the exclusions. One of the state's regulators strongly objected to the exclusions during last week's meeting in Boston of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.
I'm not dumping all my stocks and mutual funds, pulling money out of the bank or hoarding gold. And I don't believe all electric power will go out, planes will fall out of the sky and our computer- dependent world will come crashing down at 12:00:01 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 1, 2000.21 June
But neither do I dismiss the warnings of those who fear that the millennium bug will create massive disruptions, cause businesses to fail and throw the world into a major recession.
The tough job is separating the facts - and the valid concerns raised by many people familiar with the problem - from the self- serving hype of those who stand to profit from mass panic over this Year 2000 or "Y2K" problem.
"One of the things that detracts from the possible seriousness of this is the bunch of newsletter promoters running around talking about Armageddon," said Henry Montgomery, a certified financial planner in Minneapolis.
Montgomery's views typify those of most financial planners interviewed for an article about the Y2K problem in this month's issue of the Journal of Financial Planning, a magazine for financial professionals put out by the Institute of Certified Financial Planners in Denver.
One of the planners' concerns is that scare headlines and predictions of a financial meltdown will prompt nervous investors to make rash - and improper - decisions.
The Journal, for example, checked an 800 number given out on a radio show as a source of information on the Y2K problem. It turned out to be a telemarketing service peddling gold and precious metals.
The lesson here: Do not overreact, but become informed about the Y2K problem. Much more will be known in the next few months as many computer users and businesses test their readiness and keep studying the issue.
"It's definitely a concern, but we're not in a position to start screaming fire," said David Lull, a certified financial planner in Denver.
Many of you share that concern.
"We have several friends who are planning to take their investments out of whatever plans they are in and holding the money until they see what happens," wrote Luann Smith, a reader from Troutdale, Ore. "We expect to see a government clamp-down on removing funds if this looks like a trend."
Let me make it clear I am no expert on computers or the Y2K problem. I've been reading so much and talking to so many people about it, though, that I feel I have taken - no pun intended - a crash course.
And it has been enough to tell me Y2K is not a problem we can dismiss lightly.
"We are very, very worried about the Year 2000 problem," said Mary Schapiro, president of NASD Regulation, the self-regulatory arm of the National Association of Securities Dealers, which oversees the nation's brokers.
While the major brokerage firms "are in pretty good shape" with their preparations, many smaller firms are not and will need to step up their efforts, Schapiro said.
Time is against them. The experience of many who've dealt with the issue is that the Year 2000 problem cannot be fixed quickly.
Some get early start
Take Vanguard, the nation's second-largest mutual fund group. The company, which is already running new "2000 compliant" computer code, began working on the Y2K problem with a handful of workers in late 1996 and now has more than 100 employees and outside consultants assigned to the project.
"We knew it would take the time and that's why we started as early as we did," said Brian S. Mattes, a Vanguard spokesman. "And we are very glad we did. . . . If somebody hasn't started yet, it is very doubtful they will be able to finish in time."
That's one of the biggest challenges of the Y2K problem - the deadline cannot be pushed back.
And we've already seen a sneak preview of some of the possible havoc - credit cards that expire in 2000 have been rejected by many store computer systems, and some systems have crashed trying to process multiyear contracts that extend beyond December 1999.
Now imagine, beginning in 2000, that computers refuse to spit out checks, including tax refunds. That electronic deposits, including Social Security and dividend payments, are never made. And buy and sell orders for stocks, bonds and mutual funds are not executed.
Now add this problem: Companies spend so much money trying to fix their computers that even if they succeed, the cost will eat up all their profits. Or, in the worst of cases, drive them out of business.
Most of the planners interviewed for the Journal article are more optimistic than that. They do not anticipate widespread computer failures that would cause a major collapse in the American economy.
"The biggest danger that I see is foreign companies and foreign banks that are technologically behind the United States, will fail to solve the problem and accidentally trigger trouble for us," said L. Roy Papp, the manager of the Papp mutual funds. As the economic troubles in Asia have shown, disruptions overseas can have an adverse impact on the U.S. economy.
A few dire predictions
Others see much bigger problems ahead. Among the dire forecasts: Deutsche Morgan Grenfell's chief economist Edward E. Yardeni has predicted a 60 percent chance of a 1973-74 type recession worldwide.
Dennis Grabow, an investment banker with 25 years of experience who last year founded the Millennium Investment Corp., a Chicago firm that runs hedge funds for wealthy clients, also expects a major recession.
"People who dismiss this out of hand are generally the people who haven't done any study of it," Grabow said of the Y2K problem. But as investors begin to understand the magnitude of the problem, stock price-to-earnings ratios will shrink and stock prices will end the year 25 percent lower than where they started, Grabow predicts.
Throw in the Asian economic crisis and Grabow sees the start of a global recession in mid-1999 that will run for a couple of years. "It's deeper and longer than we originally estimated," he said.
Before you panic, consider that predictions of an economic collapse are far from universally shared. The opposing argument is that the corporate and government spending needed to correct the computer bugs will give the economy a boost and keep it humming.
"Y2K is a problem that has been clearly identified and can be solved by money, and there's a willingness to spend whatever it takes to get a solution," said Stephen Leeb, editor of the newsletter Personal Finance in McLean, Va. "History teaches us that these kinds of problems offer opportunities far more than they do risks."
Counters Leo Hood, editor of the newsletter Ripples in the Waves, based in Gainesville: "Money is not a non-issue, but this is not an issue of money. This is an issue of time and resources."
And we are not giving this issue the proper attention, and instead are trying to deny reality, he said.
"In my research I've found that the people who are closest to the problem - the technicians and programmers - are the most frightened, but they would say only so much on the record," Hood said. "The people who are saying everything is OK are the PR [public relations) types."
Hood said he began researching the Y2K problem after he recommended in late 1996 and early 1997 that investors "short" the stocks of several highly touted companies that supposedly could solve the Year 2000 problem.
Overeager investors had bid the prices of some of these companies to very high levels - 50 and 60 times annual earnings. Hood said his subscribers "made a killing" by selling these stocks short - that is, selling borrowed shares and buying them back at lower prices.
"By looking into these stocks, I started getting well-versed on the Y2K problem," Hood said. "It is a very serious problem that is not being treated properly."
Next month Hood is expected to begin editing another newsletter, the Y2K Report, which will include excepts from articles published by other financial newsletters about the Year 2000 problem.
"We are starting to see more write-ups about it" in financial publications, said Steve Halpern, who will be the publisher of the Y2K Report. Halpern's flagship publication, the Fort Lauderdale-based Dick Davis Digest, distills what the editors consider the best and most interesting advice from the rest of the newsletter industry.
Halpern said the new publication and an accompanying site on the World Wide Web will seek to provide "much more balanced" coverage of the Year 2000 problem. He said it will have none of the "scary, promotional" approach the financial planners criticized, but will give the subject the attention it deserves.
"We are seeing a lot of people who are very much in a state of denial about this being a problem," Halpern said.
Humberto Cruz covers personal finance. c/o Sun-Sentinel, 3 SW 129th Ave. Pembroke Pines, FL 33027. Or e-mail through his Web site at (www.sun- sentinel.com/money/savingsgame/).
Japan must attack 'Year 2000' problem: U.S. consultant
(Kyodo News; 06/29/98)
TOKYO, June 29 (Kyodo) -- A researcher with U.S. consulting firm Gartner Group urged Japan and Germany on Monday to tackle the computer glitch known as the ''Year 2000'' problem.
Andy Kyte, research director with Gartner Group, told reporters in Tokyo, ''There are some countries that have done very little. However, I want to make clear that Gartner Group's major area of concern centers on two major industrial economies, and these are Japan and Germany.''
Kyte said Japan and Germany are heavily dependent on information technology systems and keep very short inventory supplies.
The Year 2000 problem, commonly known as ''Y2K,'' refers to the way in which computers read dates. To save precious memory space in the early days of computer programming, programmers used only the last two digits of a year -- 1998, for example, is written in most computer code as ''98.''
Computer experts now fear that in the year 2000, computers will read ''00'' as 1900, causing data to be misrepresented and systems to crash.
The Japan Users Association of Information Systems, an organization supported by the Ministry of International Trade and Industry, said in May that more than 70% of Japanese companies surveyed have yet to take measures to cope with Y2K.
Gartner Group estimates correcting the computer code will cost 300-600 billion dollars worldwide.
Kyte said Japan's response to Y2K has been hampered by management layers that slow the flow of communication and by the government's apparent reluctance to appoint a person to oversee the nation's response.
He added that Y2K does not appear to be on Japan's political agenda, unlike in the United States and Britain, where President Bill Clinton and Prime Minister Tony Blair have talked about the problem and boosted awareness among their constituents.
Kyte also said Japanese companies are lagging in their budget allocations to deal with the issue.
Most corporations in North America and Western Europe have set aside a minimum of 15% of their information technology budgets to deal with Y2K, but Japanese companies have earmarked less than 5% of their budgets, he said. But Kyte said it is not too late for Japan.
''It's like giving up smoking,'' Kyte said. ''It's better if you do it early. But doing it late is better than not giving up at all.''
UN warns member nations of millennium bug
UNITED NATIONS, June 26 (Reuters) - The U.N. General Assembly on Friday warned nations of the hazards if they did not solve the anticipated Year 2000 computer glitch and asked countries to appoint a national coordinator.
Many older computer systems record dates using only the last two digits of the year. If left uncorrected, such systems could treat the year 2000 as the year 1900, generating errors or system crashes.
U.S. Ambassador Richard Sklar said it was important that all countries address the Year 2000 problem now, saying that failures in telecommunications, banking and transportation in one country could have significant effects on many other nations.
"It is imperative that nations address the year 2000 problem now," he said. "Those which fail to do so risk serious disruptions to critical business and government functions ....There is truly no time to waste."
But he acknowledged that some systems would not be ready by Jan. 1, 2000. "We encourage nations to develop contingency plans for those critical business processes that are most at risk of experiencing failures."
The resolution, adopted by the assembly, also authorised the U.N. Economic and Social Council to prepare guidelines that countries could draw on in addressing the problem that could affect everything from manufacturing equipment to traffic lights.
British envoy Nicholas Thorne, speaking for the European Union, said the first priority for the United Nations was to make sure its own systems were under control. He also said developing nations needed help from international financial institutions.
The resolution was drawn up by Pakistani Ambassador Ahmad Kamal, head of an Informatics Working Group.
"It is the country of my ancestors, and I like it there."--Louis Armstrong on Africa
Armstrong had nothing good to say about his hometown of New Orleans, LA., and he did not want to leave anything as a legacy to be used in "The Big Easy".....
Source: The Judas Factor: The Plot to Kill Malcolm X, pp.106-107, 323, Karl Evanzz, 1992, Thunder Mouth's Press, New York, NY, 10012.
Consciencism by Kwame Nkrumah
Consciencism by Kwame Nkrumah
A few theoretic terms by Nkrumak to map out positive actions in a society--based mainly to help bring on de-colonization:
Pa=positive action in an individual.
Na=negative action in an individual.
pa=positive action in a society.
na=negative action in a society.
Formula:=(napa)g=a territory in which a negative action is greater than a positive action. More to come.
Source: Consciencism: Philosophy And Ideology For De-Colonization -Copyright 1964, Kwame Nkrumah.
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