Tag Archives: Race

Tears We Cannot Stop

 

Tears We Cannot Stop,  A Sermon to White America,  by Michael Eric Dyson, history, race, Donald TrumpTears We Cannot Stop

A Sermon to White America

by Michael Eric Dyson

St. Martin’s Press

Hardcover, $24.99

202 pages

ISBN: 978-1-250-13599-5

Book Review by Kam Williams

“America is in trouble, and a lot of that trouble–perhaps most of it–has to do with race. Everywhere we turn, there is discord, division, death and destruction.

When we survey the land, we see a country full of suffering that it cannot fully understand, and a history that it can no longer deny. Slavery casts a long shadow across our lives…

Black and white people… seem to occupy different universes with worldviews that are fatally opposed to one another… What, then, can we do?

What I need to say can only be said as a sermon… I offer this sermon to you, my dear white friends… I do so in the interest of healing our our nation through honest, often blunt, talk… Without white America wrestling with these truths and confronting these realities, we may not survive.

To paraphrase the Bible, to whom much is given, much is expected. And, you my friends, have been given so much. And the Lord knows, what wasn’t given, you simply took, took, and took, and took.

But the time is here for reckoning with the past… and moving together to redeem the nation for the future.” 

— Excerpted from the Chapter 1, “Call to Worship” (pages 3-7)

Michael Eric Dyson teaches Sociology at Georgetown University, and is the prolific author of 20 best-sellers and a popular face on the TV talk show circuit. Many might forget that Professor Dyson got his doctorate in Religion from Princeton University.

In his new book, Tears We Cannot Stop, he reminds us that, “Although I am a scholar, a cultural and political critic, and a social activist, I am, before, and above anything else, an ordained Baptist minister.” That helps explain the profusion of captivating, flowery rhetoric whenever the brother’s been handed a microphone.

While his previous works were aimed at a black audience, this is his first intended to be read by whites. It is also written in a unique literary style, namely, as a sermon designed to keep Caucasians standing on their feet like an inspired  congregation of holy rollers.

The chapters are even laid out like a church service, starting with the “Call to Worship,” followed by “Hymns

Tears We Cannot Stop,  A Sermon to White America,  by Michael Eric Dyson, history, race, Donald Trump
Author: Michael Eric Dyson

of Praise,” an “Invocation,” and the “Scripture Reading” leading to the “Sermon,” and concluding with the “Benediction.” The meat of the message can be found in the Sermon section which opens with the iconoclastic suggestion that there is no such thing as a white race.

Professor Dyson’s point there is that whiteness is an arbitrary (as opposed to a scientific) construct which affords one group advantages and privileges at the expense of others. He argues that “whiteness is made up, and that white history disguised as American history is a fantasy, as much a fantasy as white superiority and white purity.”

If I were Dyson, I wouldn’t be holding my breath for a positive reception from his intended audience, given the ascension of Donald Trump and the celebration of rednecks in the runaway best seller, Hillbilly Elegy. He might be better off redirecting his sermon to the African-American community and changing his incendiary opus’ subtitle to “Preaching to the Choir!”

Can I get an “Amen!”

To order a copy of Tears We Cannot Stop, visit: https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1250135990/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20

 

Source:  GIG News

Moving Biopic Recounts Jesse Owens’ Exploits at Berlin Olympics

 

RACE, DVD review by Kam Williams, Jesse Owens, 1936 Olympics, Adolf HitlerRace

DVD Review by Kam Williams

Moving Biopic Recounts Jesse Owens’ Exploits at Berlin Olympics

Jesse Owens (Stephan James) is famous for winning four gold medals at the 1936 Olympics staged in Berlin. The in track and field events events in which he competed included the 100 meter dash, the 200 meter dash, the long jump and the 4 x 100 meter relay race.

What makes Owens’ feat remarkable is that he had to overcome not only racism at home but the prejudice he encountered in Germany which had embraced Nazi notions about whites being a master race. So, not only did he have to deal with discrimination in the States but prejudice on the part of Adolf Hitler (Adrian Zwicker).

Directed by Stephen Hopkins (Lost in Space), Race is a character-driven biopic which has much more to offer than an account of Jesse’s historic assault on the record books. For, in addition to recreating the tension surrounding each of the contests, the picture devotes considerable time to fleshing out the protagonist’s personality.

As the film unfolds, we learn about Jesse’s humble roots in Cleveland, and that he was the first of his family’s ten children to attend college. When he left for Ohio State, he already had a baby (Yvanna-Rose Leblanc) with Ruth Solomon (Shanice Banton), the childhood sweetheart he would eventually wed and remain married to until his death in 1980.

RACE, DVD review by Kam Williams, Jesse Owens, 1936 Olympics, Adolf Hitler

At the university, Jesse forged a close relationship with his track coach,  Larry Snyder (Jason Sudeikis), who also served as something of a surrogate father. And when his confidence was being undermined by bigoted officials on the U.S. Olympic Committee, Snyder decided to pay his own way to accompany his promising protege to the games in Berlin.

There, Jesse was shaken to be greeted with the N-word. He was equally shocked by see signs in stores declaring “No Jews or dogs allowed.” Nevertheless, he managed to block out the madness all around him while concentrating on performing in the Olympic stadium to the best of his ability.

RACE, DVD review by Kam Williams, Jesse Owens, 1936 Olympics, Adolf Hitler

Jesse’s prevailing over Aryan athletes infuriated Hitler who refused to shake his hand, as was the proper protocol, at least with white gold medal-winners. Despite pressure from the Fuhrer and his henchman Joseph Goebbels (Barnaby Metschurat) to follow suit in the snub, German long jumper Carl “Luz’ Long (David Cross) went out of his way to embrace the champion ostracized on account of his skin color. (Postscript: The two remained friends until Carl perished while fighting on the front lines in World War II).

Regrettably, Jesse’s reception back home wasn’t much better, given how the White House never publicly acknowledged his remarkable achievement. A very inspiring, long overdue tribute to a great patriot and African-American icon.

Excellent (4 stars)

Rated PG-13 for profanity, mature themes and  ethnic slurs

In English and German with subtitles

Running time: 135 minutes

Distributor: Universal Pictures Home Entertainment

Blu-ray Extras: The Making of Race; Becoming Jesse Owens; and The Owen Sisters.

To order a copy of Race on Blu-ray, visit:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B01BTDOSFY/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20

Source:  Baret News

Inspirational Biopic Recounts Jesse Owens’ Triumphs at 1936 Berlin Olympics

 

Race

Film Review by Kam Williams

Inspirational Biopic Recounts Jesse Owens’ Triumphs at 1936 Berlin Olympics

Jesse Owens (Stephan James) is famous for winning four gold medals at the 1936 Olympics staged in Berlin. The in track and field events events in which he competed included the 100 meter dash, the 200 meter dash, the long
jump and the 4 x 100 meter relay race.

Race, Film Review by Kam Williams, Jesse Owens, Berlin Olympics, long overdue tribute

What makes Owens’ feat remarkable is that he has to overcome not only racism at home but the prejudice he encountered in Germany which has embraced Nazi notions about whites being a master race. So, not only did he have to deal with discrimination in the States but prejudice on the part of Adolf Hitler (Adrian Zwicker).

Directed by Stephen Hopkins (Lost in Space), Race is a character-driven biopic which has much more to offer than an account of Jesse’s historic assault on the record books. For, in addition to recreating the tension surrounding each of the contests, the picture devotes considerable time to fleshing out the protagonist’s personality.

Race, Film Review by Kam Williams, Jesse Owens, Berlin Olympics, long overdue tribute

As the film unfolds, we learn about Jesse’s humble roots in Cleveland, and that he was the first of his family’s ten children to attend college. When he left for Ohio State, he already had a baby (Yvanna-Rose Leblanc) with Ruth Solomon (Shanice Banton), the childhood sweetheart he would eventually wed and remain married to until his death in 1980.

At the university, Jesse forged a close relationship with his track coach,  Larry Snyder (Jason Sudeikis), who also served as something of a surrogate father. And when his confidence was being undermined by bigoted officials on the U.S. Olympic Committee, Snyder decided to pay his own way to accompany his promising protege to the games in Berlin.

Race, Film Review by Kam Williams, Jesse Owens, Berlin Olympics, long overdue tribute

There, Jesse was shaken to be greeted with the N-word. He was equally shocked by see signs in stores declaring “No Jews or dogs allowed.” Nevertheless, he managed to block out the madness all around him while concentrating on performing in the Olympic stadium to the best of his ability.

Jesse’s prevailing over Aryan athletes infuriated Hitler who refused to shake his hand, as was the proper protocol, at least with white gold medal-winners. Despite pressure from the Fuhrer and his henchman Joseph Goebbels (Barnaby Metschurat) to follow suit in the snub, German long jumper Carl “Luz’ Long (David Cross) went out of his way to embrace the champion ostracized on account of his skin color. (Postscript: The two remained friends until Carl perished while fighting on the front lines in World War II).

Regrettably, Jesse’s reception back home wasn’t much better, given how the White House never publicly acknowledged his remarkable achievement. A very inspiring, long overdue tribute to a great patriot and African-American icon.

Excellent (4 stars)

Rated PG-13 for profanity, mature themes and  ethnic slurs

In English and German with subtitles

Running time: 134 minutes

Distributor: Focus Features