Friday, January 23, 2009

We are living HISTORY.............

January 20, 2009, approximately 12 pm, Washington, DC, the day the first African American President was Inaugurated. I can't believe that in my lifetime, I was able to be apart of a historical moment such as this. As African Americans, we've all heard from our parents, teachers, t.v., etc. that we can be anything we want to be, today we can actually believe it.

My family, friends and I were all in attendance to witness history. We cheered as President Barack Obama took his oath. We were dead quiet as he made his first speech as President. Can you imagine, a room full of black boys ages, 7 to 15, all watching as this man is showing America what we really are like? Black boys who will now have a Black man running this country for the majority of their lives. This is truly a moment that I'm sure they will never forget.

Did you see how First Lady Michelle looked at her husband with so much pride, adoration and love? I for one thoroughly enjoyed seeing black love displayed in that manner. It gives me a renewed hope in black relationships every time I see how Barack holds his woman, and how he looks at her, and the way she looks at him. The respect they have for each other makes me smile from ear to ear every time I see them.

My only somber thought of the day was that my family members who are no longer here on earth were not able to experience this moment. I'm sure they were looking down from Heaven just as proud as we all were. But only if they could have been here to share it with us.

I don't mean to make this into a Black thing, but I can't help but to feel extremely proud and hopeful for our future after witnessing this historical event. We've all heard that we can do it, but to actually live to see it happen is an amazing feeling.

In case you missed it, this is the first address of our new President, I hope it touches you as much as it touched me. Enjoy!

Sweet T

OBAMA: My fellow citizens:
I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. I thank President Bush for his service to our nation, as well as the generosity and cooperation he has shown throughout this transition.
Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath. The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace. Yet, every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because we the people have remained faithful to the ideals of our forebears, and true to our founding documents.
So it has been. So it must be with this generation of Americans.
That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood. Our nation is at war, against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred. Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age. Homes have been lost; jobs shed; businesses shuttered. Our health care is too costly; our schools fail too many; and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.
These are the indicators of crisis, subject to data and statistics. Less measurable but no less profound is a sapping of confidence across our land — a nagging fear that America's decline is inevitable, and that the next generation must lower its sights.
Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America — they will be met.
On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.
On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics.
We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things. The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.
In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned. Our journey has never been one of shortcuts or settling for less. It has not been the path for the faint-hearted — for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame. Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things — some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labor, who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.
For us, they packed up their few worldly possessions and traveled across oceans in search of a new life.
For us, they toiled in sweatshops and settled the West; endured the lash of the whip and plowed the hard earth.
For us, they fought and died, in places like Concord and Gettysburg; Normandy and Khe Sanh.
Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life. They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions; greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.
This is the journey we continue today. We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth. Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began. Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished. But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions — that time has surely passed. Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.
For everywhere we look, there is work to be done. The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act — not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth. We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology's wonders to raise health care's quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. All this we will do.
Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions — who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans. Their memories are short. For they have forgotten what this country has already done; what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage.
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. The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works — whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified. Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward. Where the answer is no, programs will end. Those of us who manage the public's dollars will be held to account — to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day — because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.
Nor is the question before us whether the market is a force for good or ill. Its power to generate wealth and expand freedom is unmatched, but this crisis has reminded us that without a watchful eye, the market can spin out of control — and that a nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous. The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our gross domestic product, but on the reach of our prosperity; on our ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart — not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.
As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals. Our founding fathers ... our found fathers, faced with perils we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations. Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience's sake. And so to all the other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born: know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman, and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and that we are ready to lead once more.
Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.
We are the keepers of this legacy. Guided by these principles once more, we can meet those new threats that demand even greater effort — even greater cooperation and understanding between nations. We will begin to responsibly leave Iraq to its people, and forge a hard-earned peace in Afghanistan. With old friends and former foes, we will work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat, and roll back the specter of a warming planet. We will not apologize for our way of life, nor will we waver in its defense, and for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken; you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you.
For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus — and non-believers. We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth; and because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation, and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.
To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect. To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society's ills on the West — know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy. To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.
To the people of poor nations, we pledge to work alongside you to make your farms flourish and let clean waters flow; to nourish starved bodies and feed hungry minds. And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to the suffering outside our borders; nor can we consume the world's resources without regard to effect. For the world has changed, and we must change with it.
As we consider the road that unfolds before us, we remember with humble gratitude those brave Americans who, at this very hour, patrol far-off deserts and distant mountains. They have something to tell us, just as the fallen heroes who lie in Arlington whisper through the ages. We honor them not only because they are guardians of our liberty, but because they embody the spirit of service; a willingness to find meaning in something greater than themselves. And yet, at this moment — a moment that will define a generation — it is precisely this spirit that must inhabit us all.
For as much as government can do and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies. It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break, the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which sees us through our darkest hours. It is the firefighter's courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent's willingness to nurture a child, that finally decides our fate.
Our challenges may be new. The instruments with which we meet them may be new. But those values upon which our success depends — hard work and honesty, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism — these things are old. These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history. What is demanded then is a return to these truths. What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility — a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task.
This is the price and the promise of citizenship.
This is the source of our confidence — the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny.
This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed — why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent Mall, and why a man whose father less than sixty years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.
So let us mark this day with remembrance, of who we are and how far we have traveled. In the year of America's birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river. The capital was abandoned. The enemy was advancing. The snow was stained with blood. At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people:
"Let it be told to the future world ... that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive...that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet (it)."
America, in the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words. With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come. Let it be said by our children's children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God's grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.
Thank you. God bless you. And God bless the United States of America.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Psalm 139...

I don't know how many who follow my posts believe in the Word of God, but I do and I had to go to the Bible today for guidance. Something has been bothering me a little........

We are about 13 days into the New Year, and all over the T.V., radio, and Internet we see advertisements for weight loss pills, diets, exercise programs, celebrity fitness tapes etc. Of course we are bombarded with these images this time of year because most of us resolve to "lose weight" in 2009. That is actually a resolution I dare to say is made by the majority of folks EVERY YEAR! :0 I don't have a problem with being healthy, I too strive to be healthy, although I constantly miss the mark. But what I do have a problem with is how most women have issues with their body. I am including myself in this number.

Over the past couple of weeks, I've also heard about Oprah and her weight gain. How she feels depressed, how she can't believe she let herself go, how she's embarrassed by her struggle with weight. I do feel Ms. O's pain, but do we really need to hear again how she gained weight after losing it all? Larry King even dedicated a whole hour to this "breaking news". In my opinion, Ms. O looks good. She's a 50+ woman, who realistically should not be expected to be a size 0. She is a woman of color who has curves. And I'm sure if you ask most African American men, they would say her curves are in all the right places. :)

Listening to a radio show I listen to daily, a woman writes in for advice as to whether or not she should get breast augmentation because her husband does not find her sagging breast attractive any more. This woman has had this man's children, and from what I gather has been a good wife to him. He also offered to pay for the operation. She said she wanted to be appealing to her husband, which I can totally understand, but she was afraid of going under the knife. How far do we have to go to keep our husbands attracted to us? Furthermore, what does he look like after 20+ years of marriage? I'm sure he is not what he used to be either. Newsflash: All women's breast begin to sag at some point! Unless of course the choice is made to get fake ones.

On a daily basis, I have conversations with my family and friends about weight issues, and what we don't like about ourselves. Some of those conversations are initiated by me, some of them are not, but I do add my two cents about what I just don't like about my body. When will it all end? I'm sick of myself at this point.

I guess my point in all of this is to check myself, and hopefully in the process, help others see that we are who we are, and we should love ourselves. We should strive to be healthy, but don't place a lot of effort in being a certain size or weight. This is a hard thing for me to do, and I'm sure it's hard for most women. We see images all day of women who look perfect. Perfect skin, hair, clothes, and shoes. I will not resolve to stop complaining about me because I know that most likely that won't happen, at least not right away. I won't even make a statement that I'll try to do better, because that always slaps me in the face too. I will say that I'm sick of myself and my complaints. I am surrounded by beautiful women. I may be a little biased, but it's true. I have friends and family members that are gorgeous. The problem is they don't see what I, and countless others see. All we see are imperfections. Maybe if I begin to love who I am, and my body in all my imperfections, it will rub off on those around me, and then it will rub off on those around them.

For those of us who believe, I leave you with this:
Psalm 139:13-18 (NKJV)
~For You have formed my inward parts; You have covered me in my mother's womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well. My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, the days fashioned for me, when as yet there were none of them. How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! how great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand; When I awake, I am still with You.~

If I am what this Scripture says I am, what is it going to take for me to believe it? If God thinks many precious thoughts of me, why do I think otherwise?

Sweet T

Thursday, January 8, 2009

I am feeling so proud!

Yes, I know it's about 2 months too late for a post like this. But this morning on my way to work, they were playing the "best of" on a radio show that I listen to at times. Today, they replayed the show from November 5, 2008, and we all know what happened that day! Just in case you missed it, that was the day that the first African American President was elected to serve the American people!!

As the radio show hosts began to share their experiences from the night before, and how they felt watching the election night results, I began to tear up thinking about that night myself. It was, and still is, an unbelievable feeling. I was able to share a moment like that with my 9 year old son. A little black boy who was able to see that "YES WE CAN" become President. "YES WE CAN" love our wife and children in public without shame. "YES WE CAN" be smart, intellectual men, (and women) and still have "swagga". It felt so good to know that we finally have someone that can represent us to all of the world in a positive way.

This morning on the news, they had a segment about the person who is likely to be named the oldest woman. Mrs. Gertrude Baines is 114 years old, was born in 1894, lives in a California nursing home, was a former slave and according to reports voted for Barack Obama because "he's for the colored people". I'm not saying that was a good reason to vote for him, however can you imagine the history she took with her to the polling station? Can you imagine the struggles she was able to leave right there at the polls? I'm imagining a load being carried for 114 years, and she was finally able to drop it, right there on November 4, 2008. I would love to sit at the feet of Mrs. Baines and just listen. Listen to all that she's seen, all that she's heard, all that she's done, all that she can offer me.

In the Washington Post, it's reported that in Denver Colorado, Terrance Carroll, a sharecropper's grandson, was chosen as speaker of Colorado's House of Representatives, the first in that state. A state where blacks only make up about 4% of the population. He and Senate President, Peter C. Groff, are the only blacks among Colorado's 100 legislators.

All of this information came to me today. I am a firm believer that nothing happens by coincidence. For some reason, I received this info. Maybe it was to pass it along to you, in order for you to pass it along to others, and so on and so on. These are just a few reasons why I'm feeling proud today. I'm proud of Eric Holden, nominee for Attorney general, Michelle Obama, a woman who on her own could concur the world but chose to drop it all to support her husband in his vision, all the celebs who took time to educate our young folks on how important it is for our voices to be heard, Luda, Jay Z, Diddy, Russell Simmons, etc. I'm proud of those of us who voted. I'm proud of those of us who wanted to vote, but couldn't for various reasons. I'm proud of the children who were not old enough to vote, but were very interested in learning about this political process. I am so proud of the men and women who choose to do the right thing daily without recognition. I could go on and on today, but I won't. I would just leave you all with this:


Lets keep showing the world that the images they see frequently, are not who we really are. My tidbit for today is: Whenever you get down about the state of our people, or you are bombarded with negative images of who we are, look around you, we have plenty of reasons to be proud!

Sweet T

Monday, January 5, 2009

Child support. Is it really that serious?

Yesterday, I heard the most disturbing news to date. Yes, I know, we are only 5 days into the new year, but I really could not believe my ears. A man killed his son because he didn't want to pay child support. Wow!! The boy was only 2 years old. Apparently, the father never spent time with him during these 2 years of his life, but when ordered to pay to support the child, he decides to pick him up under the pretense of spending time with his son. Wow! He apparently owed $4000 in child support payments.

This idiot actually admitted to killing his son because he didn't want to support him financially. According to News Services, he also said, "I'm sorry about killing my baby. I had a whole bunch of reasons." Wow! I would surely love to hear these "bunch of reasons" he has for killing a 2 year old boy. Is supporting your child really that serious?

I hear all types of stories of how men will quit a job so that they don't have to pay child support. Or they will opt to work "under the table" to avoid child support payments. I've also heard stories of men who pay less than $200 a month, but will still petition the court for a decrease in payments. I mean, come on, is it that bad? I believe that these men are the immature one's who think that their money is going to somehow benefit the mother of the child. That is so ridiculous to me. Think about it. The mother of that child provides, shelter, clothes, food, entertainment, etc., and all you have to pay is $200 or less to help support and you really believe that she is living large off of your money? Wow!

I'm really at a loss for words on this one. I just can't wrap my mind around it. How did he kill the baby? Can you imagine a 2 year old looking up at him as he takes his last breath? And all this dude can say is, "I have a whole bunch of reasons" Wow! The only thing I can say today is, ladies, lets try to be a little more careful on who we choose to have children with. I know, we really don't know what a person is capable of, but we have to do better.

Sweet T

Saturday, January 3, 2009


We are 3 days into the new year and I'm sitting here trying to think of what I can do to make this year a year that can impact my life in a positive way. Last year, 2008, was not a bad year, I must admit, but there are some things that I feel I could have done a little better. I know we all make the new years resolution to lose weight, to exercise, to go to work on time things like that. But this year, I want to really put some thought into it, and make life changes, not just resolutions.

I really want to map out this year. I want to take a look at my life to see what can be made better for me, set a list of priorities, and figure out ways to make these things happen. I have to do some serious soul searching. I'm going to have to get closer to God to find my life's purpose. But I'm ready to do just that. Several years ago, I went through a transition in my life, that I feel has changed me for good. I learned some things about me that hurt, but I also learned some things about me that freed me. I know this transition is going to be the same. I know there are going to be some revelations about myself that will not make me feel good, but I also know that there are things that I will learn about myself that will make me feel good, and some that will come as a surprise to me. Yes, there are still some things that I don't know about myself yet.

One thing I did learn about myself in 2008 is that I love spending time with my family. This past year, we've spent a great deal of time together, and I realize that those are the times that I'm the most happiest. No, we are not perfect, but what family is? Another thing I realized last year is that having a good relationship is possible. Again, no relationship is perfect, but a relationship that is perfect for ME is possible. :)

All in all, 2008 was a good year. I'm hoping that 2009 can be even better. Although my life is not perfect, I can always find some things that just can't be changed. Also, there are some things that can be changed. My tidbit for today is: Take inventory of your life. Look at the things around you that you know you can't live without and begin to feed those things to make them grow. Look at those things in your life that you are not happy with and make a plan to change those things or make them better. Forget about the past, live for today. Life is too short to look behind. Look forward and press on to a better 2009 and beyond.


Sweet T.

My Favorites

  • My Son
  • My Family
  • My KD
  • My Friends
  • Kindred Family Soul
  • Eric Roberson
  • Fred Hammond
  • Jill Scott
  • Mary J. Blige
  • Left Behind Series
  • Love Jones
  • Coming to America
  • The Bridges of Madison County
  • The Color Purple
  • The Kite Runner
  • The Wire
  • Boomerrang
  • The Notebook
  • Love and Basketball


"I'm calling out to You, for a strength exchange. I'll gladly take Your Joy, for my weakness"