From Pulpits to Presidents!
“White folks, not all of them, but many of our oppressors messed up. They kept us out of school, out of political office, and out of good jobs. But they made a tactical mistake; they let us go to church! They let us meet Jesus!”
– The Late Dr. Manuel Scott Sr.
The Black Church and Black Preacher brought us from a mighty long way! These proclaimers of the Gospel developed a Black Hermeneutic, or biblical interpretation that nullified the Slave Bible. Oh, you didn’t know there was a Slave Bible? The History Channel’s website captures the essence of its function.
“When slavery was legal, its proponents often justified it with the Bible; specifically, a verse that tells servants to obey their masters. There were also a lot of verses that abolitionists could and did use to argue against slavery. But you wouldn’t find those in the heavily-redacted “Slave Bible.”
Most of the Old Testament is missing, and only about half of the New Testament remains. The reason? So that the enslaved Africans in the Caribbean islands of Jamaica, Barbados, and Antigua couldn’t read or be read anything that might incite them to rebel.
The Slave Bible was actually titled Parts of the Holy Bible, selected for the use of the Negro Slaves, in the British West-India Islands.”
Anyone who frequents the Old Testament liberation stories is well acquainted with the Israelites’ plight, flight, and fight. God sent them fresh manna and quail by day and fire by night. But in much the same way, God sent the Black preacher to the African captives who found themselves in the most severe form and record of chattel slavery.
We supported and compensated our preachers so that they could be fiercely independent. Black men as recently as the 1960s felt forced to hide their Cadillac from their White bosses and peers. Our grandmothers fulfilled wealthy White women’s “duties” during the week and looked more prosperous than their employers looked on “any given Sunday.”
Meanwhile, Black preachers were able to say what their congregants could not say. And say it poetically. They parlayed their biblical interpretation with well-placed poetry, politics, and passion! In our Freedom Diary, the Black Preacher is the only second in significance to the Black Church.
Black pulpiteers imbued us with consciousness and confidence. Contemporaneously, Black preachments fueled by prose and poetry, promoted scholarship as the standard of personal and communal progress. For generations, the only educated Blacks we knew were preachers and teachers. They made us!
You can parse it however you like, but the word on the street is that Dr. Jeremiah Wright Jr. paved a road that led from his pulpit to Pennsylvania Avenue. “Obama” may have been another peculiar African surname without “Daddy J!” Dr. Wright fed him, wed him, prepared him, and declared him. The “Obama’s Strut” comes from a place in his soul! Black preachers give you something that no racist or birther can ever take from you.
This misuse of Jesus and the Bible did not stop with American slavery. Former Kenyan Prime Minister left us this invaluable caveat. “When the Missionaries arrived, the Africans had the land, and the Missionaries had the Bible. They taught us how to pray with our eyes closed. When we opened them, they had the land, and we had the Bible.”
Dr. Scott was right. White folks who wanted to keep us in bondage messed up when they took everything but Jesus from us. Black preachers held their interpretation of Jesus up as an all-purpose standard. Black historians should never take their labor lightly.
“The Word” like Black Lives…Matter!!
TYLER PERRY’s “Sistas”
By Valder Beebe
The more I conduct the Valder Beebe Show, the more real life intersects with topics from and about my guests. Ebony Obsidian & DeVale Ellis from Tyler Perry’s Sistas on BET, were my guests recently in the Valder Beebe Show studios. The Sistas stars shared about their characters; their ups and downs of love and friendship and the pressure of being 30-Something, Single and Black.
Sistas, the one-hour drama follows a group of single Black females as they navigate their “complicated love life,” careers and friendship through the ups-and-downs of living in a modern world of social media and unrealistic relationship goals. Mr. Perry takes viewers on an exhilarating ride of emotions and gut-busting predicaments that will test the ladies’ long-standing friendship. This band of women, intertwined with their newfound relationships, must navigate this new-age dating scene as they continue to search for love in their 30s. The talented ensemble cast of “Tyler Perry’s Sistas” includes KJ Smith, Mignon, Ebony Obsidian, Novi Brown, Chido Nwokocha, DeVale Ellis, Brian Jordan Jr., Kevin A. Walton, Anthony Dalton II, Trinity Whiteside, and Crystal Renee’ Hayslett.
The multi-talented Ebony Obsidian stars as ‘Karen Mott.’ The one-time journalism major can be seen as Michelle in the Netflix series Master of None and Adrienne in If Beale Street Could Talk. Ebony can also be seen as Nia in the upcoming Hulu series Wu-Tang: An American Saga, and Carol in Amazon’s The Hunt.
The darling and handsome, Devale Ellis is a former NFL player-turned-actor who has served in guest starring roles on popular hit TV dramas such as The Blacklist and NCIS. He also played his first supporting role as Tommy in the award-winning feature film, Full Circle. In 2019, Devale landed a recurring role in the Emmy nominated Netflix series, It’s Bruno, as Nelson. Sistas stars publicists provided text in conjunction with the Valder Beebe Show
VBS: I love the idea of Sistas from Tyler Perry, women and women of color can identify with the characters. Give us a peek into your characters.
EO: My character is a business owner, a homeowner, great friend and a sex life that is not lacking at the moment with two incredible men in their special ways.
VBS: Devale, you are a former NFL player, right now there is a lot on you as an African American male in such a well-presented series.
DE: I bring the funny to character Jack. Jack deals with a lot, he deals with recidivism; he’s been in and out of prison. He deals with having to be marginalized by the government. I bring the funny, I also bring the love and I show that I am a man who loves Black women. Jack represents your………..
Sistas’ complete interview…… YouTube.com/valderbeebeshow: SoundCloud.com/valderbeebeshow; Broadcasting to a national & global audience:
Juneteenth Celebration
Vaccinated frontline workers enjoy Mavs game
Story and Photos By Dorothy J. Gentry
Sports Editor
For the first time since March 11, 2020, the Dallas Mavericks on Monday night played before their hometown crowd.
Fans were allowed into the American Airlines Center for the first time this season and they were treated to a show as the Mavs defeated the Minnesota Timberwolves 127-122. In addition, the Mavs Maaniacs performed, fans enjoyed discounted merchandise and were also given free t-shirts.
“It’s great to honor these folks that have been courageous and have been doing such important work on the frontlines for so many months,” said Mavs Head Coach Rick Carlisle. “It’s hard to believe it’s been almost 11 months since s since the hiatus and so much has happened. But these folks have had a non-stop job between then and now.
Dallas College selects new president for El Centro Campus
Dallas College has selected Dr. Bradford Williams as the next El Centro Campus president. Most recently, Williams served as president of Oklahoma State University in Oklahoma City (OSU-OKC). He assumes his new role at Dallas College El Centro Campus today.
“After several interviews, input from our search committee and community members, it soon became apparent that Dr. Williams’ experience and enthusiasm for higher education best aligned with our mission and made him the best fit for this role,” said Dr. Joe May, Dallas College chancellor.
Dr. Williams earned his bachelor’s degree in communication, marketing and music and a master’s degree in human resource administration from East Central University in Ada, Oklahoma, and a Ph.D. in educational leadership and higher education from Oklahoma State University. Driven by a strong commitment to student success, employee excellence and community relevance, he values creativity and innovation, collaboration and the integration of technology to enhance resources to provide students hope, help and a way forward.
Prior to OSU-OKC, Dr. Williams served as deputy director of strategic planning and initiative at the Oklahoma Department of Commerce. He also directed fundraising efforts at the Price Tower Arts Center in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, and at the University of Central Oklahoma. Dr. Williams worked as an ombudsman for the Chickasaw Nation Office of Community Advocacy and for its Division of Housing. He is a citizen of the Choctaw Nation.
“It’s an honor to join the Dallas College team,” said Dr. Williams. “I am grateful for the opportunity to serve the community and help people become the best version of themselves.”
Dr. Williams will replace Dr. José Adames, who has led Dallas College El Centro Campus for six years. Dr. Adames stepped down in December to pursue other endeavors.
With a stellar cast, Denzel Washington, Rami Malek and Jarod Leto, I had high expectations for the crime drama THE LITTLE THINGS, but in this thriller a great cast can’t overcome a weak script. Longview, Texas native, John Lee Hancock (who wrote the 2009 football biopic THE BLINDSIDE), both directed and wrote THE LITTLE THINGS and he missed his mark with both the script and his direction of the film.
The movie runs at a slow pace and is just simply boring (I nodded off at one point in the film). Almost the entire movie is delivered at a slow and tedious pace. It’s only the last 20 minutes that had some action and gave a thorough explanation of what the title means of the movie.
Washington and Malek spend the entire movie trying to catch a serial killer, played by a very creepy Jarod Leto.
In the movie Denzel is a burnt out cop with a tortured past and Malek is a young, hotshot detective who needs some work on his social skills. Together Washington becomes a mentor to the young hotshot teaching him some unorthodox methods of catching a killer.
The movie has a throwback feel to it similar to SILENCE OF THE LAMBS and KISS THE GIRLS. However, the movie never reaches the level of those two films and simply has the feel of a 90s knockoff.
The movie is rated R for violence, language and nudity. On my “Hollywood Popcorn Scale” I rate this murder mystery a MEDIUM.
James Brown’s ‘cape man’ dies
Danny Ray was 85
By Carol Ozemhoya | OW Contributor
James Brown’s “cape man” and emcee, well-known in his own right, has died of natural causes, reports WRDW in August Georgia.
Danny Ray worked for four decades with the late “Godfather of Soul,” according to Brown’s daughter Deanna. Ray was 85 years old and was known for showmanship like Brown himself, one of Augusta’s most famous residents. Behind every iconic James Brown moment was the same signature voice.
A friend of Ray told News 12 when he got the news last night, he couldn’t believe it. It finally set in this morning, when the news of Ray’s death started making headlines.
“The first hype man, the original hype man,” Coco Rubio said. “Nobody did that before. It just seemed like such a cool thing he did.”
For people like Soul Bar Owner Rubio, a friend of Ray’s he was so much more
“He was like the ultimate cool,” Rubio said. “Always dressed, sharp-dressed man. Always the best-dressed person in the room.”
-Our Weekly
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Mayor Johnson, partners launch second year of Dallas Works
Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson and partner organizations on Monday launched the second year of Dallas Works, the mayor’s summer jobs program for youth in the city.
Mayor Johnson also announced that Dallas residents between ages 15-24 will be eligible to participate in Dallas Works this year. Last year, the program was only open to high school students.
“Dallas is a city of dreamers of all ages, and it is critical to me that we help as many young people as we can achieve their dreams,” Mayor Johnson said. “This is an important initiative, and it is personal to me as someone who grew up in underserved communities here in Dallas — and as someone who will soon be raising three children in this great city.”
Mayor Johnson launched Dallas Works in February 2020 with the goal of eventually employing thousands of young people. He modeled the program on efforts in other cities such as Houston, Boston, Chicago, and New York, which have long had robust summer jobs programs — usually for people up to age 24 — that help employ thousands of people.
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated economic fallout, Dallas Works helped connect 465 kids to job training and summer jobs at businesses, nonprofits, and governmental entities. That was more than in any single year of the program’s predecessor, the Mayor’s Intern Fellows Program.
Education is Freedom runs Dallas Works in partnership with the Office of the Mayor. Other partners include Dallas ISD, the Dallas Regional Chamber, the Dallas Citizens Council, and numerous private sector companies.
Although the COVID-19 pandemic is still ongoing, Mayor Johnson and officials with the partner organizations on Monday encouraged Dallas businesses to help put young people to work this year.
“Together, we can build a better future for our city through Dallas Works,” Mayor Johnson said. “Together, we can set up our kids for success and set them on a path that will allow them to thrive for years to come. And together, we will bounce back from COVID-19 and continue to be a city of opportunity for all of our children.”
Information on the program’s eligibility and application deadlines can be found at DallasSummerJobs.org.
Jirah Mickle was tested at MCI Diagnostics!
Revitalize South Dallas Coalition
February 2021
The City and DISD are exploring ways to improve internet service. The survey and speed test will gather data about internet availability and speed of service, which will identify areas of service improvement. It only takes about 5 minutes to complete, and South and Southern Dallas residents are especially encouraged to participate. Survey: https://www.dallas.speedsurvey.org/
UT Southwestern COVID Prevalence Study
Ongoing. The study seeks understand how and where COVID-19 is spreading, what populations are most impacted, and where to provide additional informational and health resources. To ensure diversity, additional Black participants are needed from South and Southeast Dallas. Study testing is daily at 13 locations within the county. Contact: Ms. Isreal. Website: https://utswmed.org/covidstudy/study-testing-locations/
Free Food Distribution @Watermark South Dallas
Friday, February 12 & 26, 2021; 11:30am – 1:30pm. Watermark Church in South Dallas (old Pearl C. Anderson School). Free, fresh food boxes distributed in front of the school on Garden Lane. No registration or ID required. Drivers and walk-ups welcomed. Contact: Ms. Smith, 817-675-0062; csmith@watermark.org.
Texas-Themed Cookie Decorating Contest
Registration: Ends Wednesday, February 24th. In response to COVID restrictions, the State Fair of Texas will again hold this Texas-themed cookie decorating contest to just about anyone with baking skills in age-specific categories. Submit a picture of your Texas-themed cookies through the Fair’s online registration portal. The entry must be the work of the contestant. Register: https://creative.BigTex.com. Winners selected: March 2nd. Contact: kcondoianis@BigTex.com
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