Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thanksgiving Saturday in Detroit MI

Do you remember going to Hudson's during the Christmas season? Me, too!

Do you remember going to the Ford Rotunda during the Christmas season? Me, too!

Do you remember taking your children to Cobo Hall during the Christmas season? Me, too!

Well, now you can take your grandchildren to Paradeland on Saturday, November 27 and continue the fun experience of the America's Thanksgiving Parade!


Located at the Parade Company Studios at 9500 Mt. Elliott in Detroit, A Day at Paradeland will feature the parade floats and balloons, arts and crafts, sing-a-longs, games, food, and the Radio Disney D-Tour Show. You will be able to see all of the floats and balloons right up close. Of course, Santa will also be there for those photos!

Come by this Saturday, November 27 2010 from 10am to 6pm--it's only one day, and start a new Christmas in Detroit tradition with your family. OK, it's not Hudson's or the Ford Rotunda, but it looks like a lot of fun and supports all of the charities and non-profits assisted by the Michigan Parade Foundation.

Admission is $6.00 for ages 3 and up; a $1 off coupon is available at The Parade Company Website.

Friday, November 26, 2010

What is Black Friday, Really?


Many people give an incorrect connotation to "Black Friday". In its present common usage, it is the first official shopping day of the holiday season when many retailers, having operated "in the red" all year, finally start making a profit, putting them "in the black".
The term actually actually first appeared in the 19th century in Philadelphia when the police were faced with disruptive pedestrian and vehicular traffic the day after Thanksgiving. There was also a market crash in the late 1800s the day after Thanksgiving, causing the day to be named "Black Friday".
The Friday after Thanksgiving did not become the largest shopping day of the holiday season until very recently; about 2003. Until then, it was the day after Christmas when stores put everything on sale to clear their leftover inventory before the end of the calendar year. 
Stores now have hyped "Black Friday Sales" which are starting earlier and earlier--sometimes days before the Friday after Thanksgiving. Many stores open at 3:00 and 4:00 in the morning on Friday; some stores actually opened at 10pm Thursday night.
What will "Black Friday" mean for you? Hopefully, even though the economy is slowly improving, and it is good that people are shopping again, you and your family will not go "into the red" by over-shopping on "Black Friday". 

Small Business Saturday for Holiday Shopping

Wait! Before you spend all of your holiday money at the malls on Black Friday or online on Cyber Monday, save some bucks to support small businesses in America by shopping on Saturday at your local small business.



American Express is sponsoring the 1st annual Small Business Saturday to encourage holiday shoppers to shop locally. Small businesses provide almost 80% of the jobs in the United States, and as the economy slowly comes back to life, YOU can help your local small business by doing some of your shopping at a small business--especially this Saturday, November 27 2010.

You can register your small business on the Small Business Saturday Facebook Page.

Here in Detroit, there are many unique shops, stores, restaurants and outlets ready for your shopping pleasure.



Detroit's famed Cultural Center in Midtown will be ready for you with scores of specialty shops and restaurants. The Shrine of the Black Madonna Bookstore on Livernois near Davison has everything you need for your Kwanzaa table and African-themed Christmas decorations, as well as books and gifts. At Pewabic Pottery, you can find unique handmade tiles for gifts or home decoration.

Malls are fun and online shopping is convenient, but remember to support your neighbors right in your own city. They pay local taxes and hire local people and they are ready for you to shop with them.




Thursday, November 25, 2010

America's Thanksgiving Parade: Detroit MI


Today is the 84th Annual Thanksgiving Parade down Woodward Avenue in Detroit MI. Originally the J.L. Hudson's Thanksgiving Parade, it is one of the largest Thanksgiving parades in the United States.

After Hudson's left Detroit, the Thanksgiving Parade was almost doomed to extinction due to lost sponsorship. But former Michigan First Lady Paula Blanchard Stone, along with Art Van Elslander, founder of Michigan-based Art Van Furniture, stepped in to form the Michigan Parade Foundation and save the Detroit Thanksgiving Parade.

Today, the America's Thanksgiving Parade has scores of local and national sponsors and can be viewed every Thanksgiving morning all over America.

In addition to the big and beautiful balloons and exquisite floats, the Parade includes special groups and activities that help with funding and scholarships through and for the Michigan Parade Foundation:

  • The Hob Nobble Gobble: an evening of fun, dinner, artists--black tie now held at Ford Field.
  • The Distinguished Clown Corps: businesses and individuals pay a sponsorship fee to appear as clowns in the Parade.
  • The 5K Turkey Trot: run early Thanksgiving morning; most runners accept donations for the Parade Foundation.
  • The Big Head Corps: similar to the Distinguished Clowns, people again pay sponsorship fees to walk the parade in those huge papier mache heads. 



The Parade ends every year with an appearance by Santa himself, who is given a key from the current Detroit Mayor to the City of Detroit and to the hearts of every child in the metro Detroit Area.




Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving: Be Grateful!

It often seems as if the world is falling apart, but you do have things to be grateful for: can you list a few?

While you make your list, enjoy this oldie but goodie from the Hawkins Family.

(R.I.P. Rev. Walter Hawkins)



 

Posted via email from The Black Liberal Boomer Blog

Saturday, November 13, 2010

ReDeux News: Chase Bank to help Detroit mortgage holders Sat-Mon

Information from the American Banking News Website:

 JPMorgan Chase has decided to send loan advisors to set up shop in Detroit for three days, trying to help struggling homeowners find the best solution. The efforts are aimed at homeowners with Chase mortgages, and the customers that attend will have access to (1) Initial counseling to apply for a mortgage modification, (2) Counseling for those who are current on their mortgage but are struggling, (3) Short-sale assistance for those who cannot afford their home or don’t want to stay in it, and (4) Document signing and drop off for modifications.

In total, the effort will include forty Chase loan counselors, between Saturday, November 13th and Monday, November 15th during the hours of 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. It will be held at the Doubletree Detroit/Dearborn, which is located at 5801 Southfield Expressway at Ford Road, Detroit. The firm’s statement has indicated that no appointments are necessary, and expects to sit down with most borrowers within 15 minutes of their arrival.

Posted via email from The DSpot Redeux Blog

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veterans' Day: The Elmwood Cemetery in Detroit MI

[This is a rewritten post originally published at The DSpot Redeux Blog. Read the original here.]

The Gatehouse of Elmwood Cemetery. Established in 1846, the Historic Elmwood Cemetery in Detroit MI is the final resting place for many of the famous people and war veterans of Detroit and the State of Michigan. To read more of the fascinating information about the Historic Elmwood Cemetery, click here.

 

 The Civil War Memorial at Elmwood Cemetery honors those from Michigan who gave their lives during "The War of the Rebellion". This area is one of the few in the United States where the flag is flown day and night to honor fallen soldiers and sailors. This is also the area where the remains of the "Michigan Colored Infantry" are interred; one of the very first places where whites and blacks were buried in the same cemetery in the 1800s.

 

 The Joy family of Detroit is interned here. Founders of the Packard Motor Company, the United Foundation, and financiers of the Newberry Theatre and Gardens, "Joy Road" in Detroit is named for them.

 

Six generations of the Lewis Cass family are here. Lewis Cass was Michigan Territorial Governor, U.S. Senator, Secretary of State, Minister to France. His namesake is my alma mater, Cass Technical High School in Detroit. Also Cass Park, the Cass Corridor, Cass Avenue, etc.

 

 Martha Jean ("The Queen") Steinburg was a legendary Detroit radio personality and believed to be the first African-American woman to own a radio station. She holds many honors, including being inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame.

 

Coleman Alexander Young was the longest-serving mayor in Detroit history. He was also a WWII veteran, a member of the famous Tuskegee Airmen, a Michigan State Senator, and an awardee of the Springarn Medal, the highest honor of the NAACP.

 

 

Posted via email from The DSpot Redeux Blog

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald

35 years ago, 29 crew members were lost in Lake Superior, Michigan on November 10 1975.

A famous tribute song to the Edmund Fitzgerald was written and performed by singer Gordon Lightfoot.

Every year at the Mariner's Church on the Detroit River, the bell is rung twenty-nine times in honor of each lost crew member. The memorial service also reminds people of the beauty and power of Lake Superior.

Posted via email from The DSpot Redeux Blog

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Keith Olbermann Suspended from MSNBC: Why We're Angry

Keith Olbermann, long-time host of “Countdown” on MSNBC, was “suspended indefinitely without pay” on Friday, November 5 2010. 

 

Note: I did not provide many definitions of terms, explanations of my opinions, or links to media corporations in this post--on purpose. If you are a Progressive and regular viewer of MSNBC at night, I'm talking to you and you know exactly who and what I'm talking about.

His infraction: unabashedly liberal-leaning and Progressive Democrat Keith Olbermann, a private citizen who was hired as a commentator and entertainer to provide a nightly deliberately liberal-leaning and Democrat-focused television show, donated his personal funds ($2400.00) to three Democratic candidates. Keith was never presented as an objective journalist for his show. It is said that Keith did not ask for permission to donate his personal funds beforehand, he interviews Democrats on his show, and that is why he was suspended. But there is more to the story. 

MSNBC is now owned by Comcast, whose chairman gave $50,000.00 to a 3rd party organization that campaigned against Democrats this last election. One of the Democrats targeted by this organization was also one of the Democrats who received $800 of Keith’s personal money. Coincidence?

According to Dr. Rachel Maddow, who is also a liberal-leaning and Progressive Democrat with a TV show on MSNBC right after “Countdown”, said that “the point has been made” and that “Keith should be re-instated”. More importantly, there is a BIG difference between Fox “News”, which is a total media organization for the Republican party, and MSNBC, which is a true news organization with hosts with more than one political point of view (are you listening Jon Steward?). Also MSNBC does not itself directly donate to political parties as does Fox. In addition, MSNBC deals with facts, while Fox continually dishes out faux. When MSNBC hosts make a mistake, they actually correct themselves-on air.

While Keith thankfully never has Republicans on his show (that I remember), he will *call out* Democrats when he feels it necessary. Rachel does have Republicans on her show--those Republicans who have the courage to face her. She is presented as a *journalist* and just won the Walter Cronkite Award for Journalism. Keith also recently won a major award for one of his famous commentaries.

For those of us who are very upset about this, it is more than the fact that we really like Keith. It is about selective punishment. It is because Republican-leaning Comcast was looking for an excuse to *get* Keith; just like they did with David Schuster. Just as we know that Joe Scarborough is a Republican, we know that Keith Olbermann is a Democrat. Keith was hired to do a Democratic show. Keith is one of only a very few truly progressive hosts on a major media outlet.

There are some progressives who think that our outrage is overblown, that there are more important things going on in the world than Keith getting suspended.

Of course there are. Many people in Pakistan were blown up by suicide bombers while at Friday prayers. A hurricane is descending on Haiti; people are still living outside because of the January earthquake. There are landslides and murders and people are still unemployed and John Boehner will probably be the next Speaker of the House. Fox “News” is reporting as fact that the President’s trip to India and other parts of Asia will cost $2 billion a day, that he will use all 504 rooms of the “Taj Mahal Hotel”, and that he will deploy half of the U.S. Navy to accompany him. And the Teabagger people believe that garbage! Geez. Keith Olbermann is rich while the “99ers” ran out of benefits long ago. (If you watch the five progressive hosts on MSNBC, you know who the 99ers are; if you watch anyone else, you’ve probably never heard of them.)

We are angry about Keith's suspension because it is another case of a Republican corporation silencing a progressive voice on very thin charges. We are angry because David Schuster is still on “indefinite leave” from MSNBC because he said something the Republicans didn’t like. We are angry because the Republicans have a whole “news” organization that openly supports them on air and financially and all we have are Ed, Keith, Rachel, and to a lesser extent Chris and Lawrence standing up for the Progressive agenda on a major media outlet every day. (I'm still mad at Lawrence for fawning all over Tom DeLay last week. Tom DeLay: now there's a real criminal for you.)

So yes, many of us are very angry about what happened to Keith. Of course it is not as important in the great scheme of things as some of the other things that happened in the world on Friday, but it is important.

MSNBC already decided that Markos would be blocked from appearing on the network. Now Keith. We have to get our message out and past the entire Fox organization who works every day for the Republican Teabaggers, the Fox millions of dollars donated openly to the Republican Teabaggers, the millions of dollars of the shadow corporations who were declared to be people by the SCOTUS and are trying hard to silence us. The Progressives have Ed, Keith, Rachel, The Nation Magazine and one billionaire: George Soros (sometimes).

We not only love Keith, we need Keith.

This was not the week for MSNBC to make progressives angry. We have a lot of fights on our hands, and getting Keith back on the air is another fight we are ready for.

“Sidebar”: MSNBC asked Chris Hayes of The Nation to sit in Friday night; Chris often sits in for Keith and Rachel. Chris, to his credit, declined. 

“Sidebar 2”: You may be thinking: this is the “Black Liberal Boomer” blog and except for Tamron Hall, MSNBC doesn’t even have any Black hosts. I know. That is another post and another fight. Van Jones, maybe? On MSNBC? Yeah, right. Don’t hold your breath. Meanwhile, I’ll fight for Keith. This is the "Black Liberal Boomer" blog.

 

Posted via email from The Black Liberal Boomer Blog

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Ten Midterm Lessons for My President


The first twenty-two months of the presidency of Barack Hussein Obama, Jr. had more successes than failures, but you would never know it by the political themes (or lack thereof) that helped the Republicans take control of the House of Representatives and score major gains in many states. I truly hope that the President will take some time to really study “what happened” to his mandate, the Democratic majority, and “hope and change”. 

Here is my Top Ten List of what I hope the President has learned:

1) “Why Can’t We Be Friends” is just a song; the Republicans neither like nor respect you. Their only agenda is to destroy you.

2) Dance with the ones who brung ya. (African-Americans, Latinos, Young People and Unions)

3) Stand up for your convictions; don’t let the haters melt your resolve.

4) Dance with the ones who brung ya. (Progressives, Liberals and Independents)

5) Just as you can’t be both a Christian and a Muslim (not that there’s anything wrong with that), you also can’t be both a Democrat and a Republican (there is something wrong with that).

6) Dance with the ones who brung ya. (Dr. Howard Dean and the Professional Left)

7) He who gets his message out gets his message across.

8) Dance with the ones who brung ya. (LGBT)

9) While keeping America striving for excellence and intelligence, realize that most Americans are “not smart”, can't spell worth Jack,  and can’t understand your elegant professorial speech. Many Americans need to be spoken to like six-year-olds.

10) Dance with the ones who brung ya. (The 54% of Americans who voted for “Change They Can Believe In” in 2008)

Mr. President, a great majority of your core constituency is still behind you and we definitely still want you and your administration to succeed. I truly hope that before you take a well-deserved holiday vacation in Hawaii, that you use these two months to make the changes necessary for America to thrive and people to know that what you are doing is both transformational and for the greater good.

Perception is everything.


Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Michigan Turns Red and Questions about the State of the Republican Union

As of January 1 2011, Michigan will again be in the red. The last time Michigan had a Republican Governor, the *rainy-day* fund was decimated, public education was decimated, the tax base was decimated, the mental health safety net was decimated. The last Michigan Republican governor turned a record surplus and balanced budget developed by the previous Democratic governor into record deficits and massive job losses to be dealt with by the next Democratic governor (sound familiar?). He left Michigan in a shambles and left the state--literally--the day his term ended.

Now the new Republican governor has a *business* track record: he sold his previous company to China and built a new business--in China--just a few months ago. He laid off thousands in Michigan while building new plants overseas; yet he says he has a plan for jobs in Michigan. (He could start with the ones he destroyed while making himself wealthy.) He has declared that manufacturing in Michigan is dead. He wants no part of the tax credits that have made Michigan the movie-making company of the midwest. He wants to completely de-fund the "Pure Michigan" advertising campaign which was voted one of the best in the country and brought millions of tourism dollars to Michigan. He cares little for the City of Detroit. He said nothing when the Republicans threatened to kill the U.S. auto industry.

I have some questions for the new Republican *leadership* in Michigan and elsewhere in the U.S. However, they have already answered: their answer to everything is "tax cuts for the rich", "No" and "Hell No".

1) Will you make the oil companies who continue to pollute our waters (including western Michigan) pay for their negligence? NO.

2) Will you accept stimulus money that has brought jobs and infrastructure repair and restructuring to the States? NO.

3) Will you fight to give the the same excellent health care to your constituents that you will now enjoy for yourself? NO.

4) Will you refuse to accept government tax-funded salary and benefits for yourself and your family since you disparage the same for regular Americans who work for the government; like soldiers, teachers, police officers, firefighters and other first responders? NO.

5) Will you ensure continued funding for environmental concerns and tax-funded federal *mandates* like food and drug safety? NO.

6) Will you help the unemployed with emergency measures to stay afloat while all you magically bring back all of those jobs you shipped overseas? NO.

7) Will you ensure that average Americans aren't gouged by exorbitant interest rates and fees? NO.

8) Will you protect the rights of all Americans, even those who aren't white, straight, Christian married males? NO.

9) Will you take the blame when millions of Americans are still out of work in six months? NO.

10) Will you have all of your billionaire friends *bail out* the country when we have an even larger deficit because of your tax cuts for the rich, unfunded and unnecessary wars, unfunded mandates, and no money for natural disasters and oil spills? NO.

You started trying to destroy the duly elected President and this country with your obstruction on January 20 2009. You have shown you do not care what happens to ordinary Americans, as long as you have power and wealth. You don't understand that America will never be great again when 2% of its citizens have 90% of the wealth. Businesses will not grow when no one can afford to buy anything. Other countries will bypass us when our children are not educated. You believe that the earth is only 6,000 years old and that dinosaurs and humans co-existed. You deny that the polar ice caps are melting. You call "Allah" a "dirty god" without realizing that "Allah" is the same God worshipped by Christians and Jews. Christians, Jews, and Muslims are all descended from Abraham and all three religions are the only monotheistic religions and are branches of the same tree. You have no real understanding of the Constitution, American history or global cultures. You have declared a war on the middle class as well as anyone and everyone who does not fit your narrow view of who is a *real* American. You tolerate and sometimes even encourage violence against those same Americans who are different from you. Your entire M.O. is based on hatred, ignorance, fear-mongering and division. Your actions are based on lies--including the biggest Republican lie of the 21st century: the rationale for the Iraq war. Your followers don't know how to spell.

You have one year (more time than the Democrats had by your accounting). You have already stated that your only agenda item is to defeat our President. You care for nothing or no one else. By January 1 2012, if there is not full employment, a balanced budget, no wars, no Mexicans, no gays, no Muslims, and zero deficits, you will have failed and you will be voted out of office.

By the way, I want to see your birth certificates. The way most of you think and act, not only were you not born in the United States, you weren't born on this planet.

Posted via email from The Black Liberal Boomer Blog

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

I am NOT Voting Republican--I Remember!


This video is available at BarackObama.com.

Don't let the haters, history revisionists, delusionists, bigots, theocratists (OK, I made that word up), or any others who would "take our country back" to...where? keep you from voting!

All you have to do is to remember what the Republicans have done in the past several decades, and then 




All deficits have INCREASED under Republicans. Two unfunded wars. Secret meetings with oil companies. No concern for those less fortunate. I could go on and on.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Stand By Me--the World Version


Here's another video for you: reminding you to think of others who may not be as fortunate as you are. As my beloved late grandmother used to say: "Everybody ain't able..." Just because YOU had good parents, good schooling, good neighborhoods, etc., that doesn't mean everybody did. When we help other, we ALL benefit.

This video is part of an entire documentary of songs. Find out more at http://playingforchange.com. This song is available on iTunes, of course.

By the way, we need to stand by our President, too--faults and all. He needs us now more than ever.

This is MY Country!

A great oldie but goodie by Curtis Mayfield and the Impressions...reminding us that this country belongs to ALL OF US...not just a few chosen by a chosen few.

 

The pics in the video update the still-relevant lyrics.

 

Posted via email from The Black Liberal Boomer Blog