Daily Archives: August 4, 2008

>Editors’ Note from RiseUp

>Janice S. Ellis, Ph.D., Founder & Publisher of RiseUP  publications has yet another insightful Editor’s Note commentary on color and race relations in our society, that I thought I should share with everyone. 

“Oh, how we carry on a love-hate relationship with color. Color, in all its vibrant variety, is one of the spices of life. It excites and stimulates the imagination. Painters and photographers capture it on canvas. It is captured on the printed page in poetry and prose.
We marvel at the awesome beauty and bounty of Nature’s parade of color — blossoms and flowers in spring and summer, the maple trees and evergreens in fall and winter.

And then, of course, we adorn our homes and bodies with colorful furnishings, fashions and works of art — yes, even body art.

Color, in all of its richness, is welcome in every aspect of our lives except when it comes to other human beings — of color, that is. When it comes to people, suddenly different colors and shades provoke closed-mindedness rather than openness, fear rather than friendliness, oppression rather than freedom, and the baseness within us rather than the beautiful.

Our schizophrenic relationship with color is age-old. We love color in things. We loathe it in human beings. History is replete with examples of humankind’s most unkind behavior toward other human beings who do not look like us, dress like us, talk like us, worship like us, live like us, and are not the same color as us. Through the ages, many have fought and paid the ultimate sacrifice to resist and change this ugliness, and the injustice, discrimination, and persecution perpetrated upon our fellow man because of differences in color.

Imagine the possibilities if we could — if we would — appreciate the richness of different colors in people, just as we appreciate the richness of color in nature and in our own creations.

Imagine if we understood that every child, white, black, brown or yellow has the same needs: caring parents, safe neighborhoods, good schools, an opportunity to dream and to become whatever they dream of becoming.

Imagine if it was natural — a matter of unconscious practice — that every human, no matter their color, was given the benefit of the doubt and treated equally when he or she applies for a job, submits an application for college, applies to buy a house or rent an apartment.

If people of different colors were regarded with the same reverence and respect as the colors in nature, there would be no need for affirmative action, equal rights, equal employment protection, fair housing and other laws. Imagine if we weren’t required by law to do the right thing toward each other, because it just came naturally.

The economic, social and educational caste systems created around color and because of color have done as much to imprison and deprive the perpetrators as the perpetrated.

Great strides and gains may be made if we would only try to better understand our conflicting feelings around color, beginning with the simple acknowledgment of the common color that runs through our veins and binds us all with the gift of life.

Just imagine what might happen if we ceased to allow insignificant differences in skin color to confuse and compromise the quality of life we share as neighbors, colleagues, fellow travelers on the world stage. Just imagine.”

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Filed under Janice S. Ellis, Race Relations, RiseUp magazine

Editors’ Note from RiseUp

Janice S. Ellis, Ph.D., Founder & Publisher of RiseUP  publications has yet another insightful Editor’s Note commentary on color and race relations in our society, that I thought I should share with everyone. 

“Oh, how we carry on a love-hate relationship with color. Color, in all its vibrant variety, is one of the spices of life. It excites and stimulates the imagination. Painters and photographers capture it on canvas. It is captured on the printed page in poetry and prose.
We marvel at the awesome beauty and bounty of Nature’s parade of color — blossoms and flowers in spring and summer, the maple trees and evergreens in fall and winter.

And then, of course, we adorn our homes and bodies with colorful furnishings, fashions and works of art — yes, even body art.

Color, in all of its richness, is welcome in every aspect of our lives except when it comes to other human beings — of color, that is. When it comes to people, suddenly different colors and shades provoke closed-mindedness rather than openness, fear rather than friendliness, oppression rather than freedom, and the baseness within us rather than the beautiful.

Our schizophrenic relationship with color is age-old. We love color in things. We loathe it in human beings. History is replete with examples of humankind’s most unkind behavior toward other human beings who do not look like us, dress like us, talk like us, worship like us, live like us, and are not the same color as us. Through the ages, many have fought and paid the ultimate sacrifice to resist and change this ugliness, and the injustice, discrimination, and persecution perpetrated upon our fellow man because of differences in color.

Imagine the possibilities if we could — if we would — appreciate the richness of different colors in people, just as we appreciate the richness of color in nature and in our own creations.

Imagine if we understood that every child, white, black, brown or yellow has the same needs: caring parents, safe neighborhoods, good schools, an opportunity to dream and to become whatever they dream of becoming.

Imagine if it was natural — a matter of unconscious practice — that every human, no matter their color, was given the benefit of the doubt and treated equally when he or she applies for a job, submits an application for college, applies to buy a house or rent an apartment.

If people of different colors were regarded with the same reverence and respect as the colors in nature, there would be no need for affirmative action, equal rights, equal employment protection, fair housing and other laws. Imagine if we weren’t required by law to do the right thing toward each other, because it just came naturally.

The economic, social and educational caste systems created around color and because of color have done as much to imprison and deprive the perpetrators as the perpetrated.

Great strides and gains may be made if we would only try to better understand our conflicting feelings around color, beginning with the simple acknowledgment of the common color that runs through our veins and binds us all with the gift of life.

Just imagine what might happen if we ceased to allow insignificant differences in skin color to confuse and compromise the quality of life we share as neighbors, colleagues, fellow travelers on the world stage. Just imagine.”

Leave a comment

Filed under Janice S. Ellis, Race Relations, RiseUp magazine

The spinning at MoreMonmouthMusings has made me dizzy


I haven’t commented on the spin job being performed by Art Gallagher over at his bog MoreMonmouthMusings lately, other than to comment on the meeting of the Middletown Human Rights Commission last week and what the outcome of that meeting was in relationship to Art’s blog and his controversial use of the “N” word, because quite frankly it has made me dizzy.

The many posts and comments to his blog over the past 2 weeks have done nothing, in my opinion, to foster a better understanding of race. All that it has succeeded in doing so far is to feed Art’s own self important and grandiose impressions of his own self worth and has caused others unnecessary distress. In his attempt to discredit Jesse Jackson for saying he wanted to cut off Barack Obama’s N***** Nuts, he brought the scorn and condemnation of others onto himself.

When critics spoke out against his clumsy attempts at discussing race he has lashed out at them by calling them names or by trying to downplay their concerns because after all, he did his research, as his many postings of on the history of slavery has shown.

It is interesting to note that of Art Gallagher’s supporters the only ones to come forward and show their support are two 20 something year old conservative republicans, James Hogan and Eric Sedler, Hogan being a failed candidate for Frank Pallone’s seat in the 6th congressional district and Sedler who is the Chairman of the Monmouth County Young Republicans (whose only knowledge of race relations is what they learned in the history books), and an anonymous right wing blogger, who doesn’t have the intestinal fortitude, guts or courage to write under his real name. He uses the moniker of Barry Goldwater and is responsible for the trash that is posted on the Voice of Reason. Why hasn’t anyone else come out to lend their voice to Art’s crusade? Probably because they know that no possible good can come of it.

One other of Art’s alleged supporters, a mysterious person called Dwayne, left a very level headed and intelligent comment on the MoreMonmouthMusings blog in response to the post “What does the N-Word mean?” I will admit it was thought provoking.

As it turns out, this Dwayne seems to be none other than Dwayne Harris, the Atlantic Highlands Township Clerk, who has made it quite clear with a letter to the Editor of the Courier, in the printed edition of this week’s paper, that he is no supporter of Art Gallagher or his blog MoreMonmouthMusings.

I also do not see the point or relevance in trying to bring into the conversation controversial Rap or Hip-Hop lyrics other than an attempt to inflame the situation. To make light of or to dismiss Barack Obama’s condemnation of these lyrics as simply a ploy because he is the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee is disingenuous, others including the NAACP have spoken out against these types of lyrics.

I also can not believe that Art, until a few days ago never read the full text of Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I have a dream” speech before even starting this conversation. How can anyone talk about race and not ever have read King’s landmark speech? 

As we all know by now, the MHRC has denounce Art’s method of introducing a discussion on race by printing controversial statements that included the “N” word, which has lead Mr. Gallagher to now seek out the Middletown Township Committee and Mayor Scharfenberger at tonight’s workshop meeting.

If anyone is truly upset with either, Art Gallagher, the Middletown Human Rights Commission or Middletown’s Mayor Scharfenberger, then I suggest you show up at Town Hall tonight and make your voices heard on this subject. I am sure that it will be one hell of a show and well worth the price of admission.

Tune in tomorrow for the outcome because I am sure that the spin will make everyone nauseous.

1 Comment

Filed under Art Gallaher, Martin Luther King Jr., Mayor Scharfenberger, Middletown Human Rights Commission, Middletown Township Committee, MoreMonmouthMusings, Spin

The spinning at MoreMonmouthMusings has made me dizzy


I haven’t commented on the spin job being performed by Art Gallagher over at his bog MoreMonmouthMusings lately, other than to comment on the meeting of the Middletown Human Rights Commission last week and what the outcome of that meeting was in relationship to Art’s blog and his controversial use of the “N” word, because quite frankly it has made me dizzy.

The many posts and comments to his blog over the past 2 weeks have done nothing, in my opinion, to foster a better understanding of race. All that it has succeeded in doing so far is to feed Art’s own self important and grandiose impressions of his own self worth and has caused others unnecessary distress. In his attempt to discredit Jesse Jackson for saying he wanted to cut off Barack Obama’s N***** Nuts, he brought the scorn and condemnation of others onto himself.

When critics spoke out against his clumsy attempts at discussing race he has lashed out at them by calling them names or by trying to downplay their concerns because after all, he did his research, as his many postings of on the history of slavery has shown.

It is interesting to note that of Art Gallagher’s supporters the only ones to come forward and show their support are two 20 something year old conservative republicans, James Hogan and Eric Sedler, Hogan being a failed candidate for Frank Pallone’s seat in the 6th congressional district and Sedler who is the Chairman of the Monmouth County Young Republicans (whose only knowledge of race relations is what they learned in the history books), and an anonymous right wing blogger, who doesn’t have the intestinal fortitude, guts or courage to write under his real name. He uses the moniker of Barry Goldwater and is responsible for the trash that is posted on the Voice of Reason. Why hasn’t anyone else come out to lend their voice to Art’s crusade? Probably because they know that no possible good can come of it.

One other of Art’s alleged supporters, a mysterious person called Dwayne, left a very level headed and intelligent comment on the MoreMonmouthMusings blog in response to the post “What does the N-Word mean?” I will admit it was thought provoking.

As it turns out, this Dwayne seems to be none other than Dwayne Harris, the Atlantic Highlands Township Clerk, who has made it quite clear with a letter to the Editor of the Courier, in the printed edition of this week’s paper, that he is no supporter of Art Gallagher or his blog MoreMonmouthMusings.

I also do not see the point or relevance in trying to bring into the conversation controversial Rap or Hip-Hop lyrics other than an attempt to inflame the situation. To make light of or to dismiss Barack Obama’s condemnation of these lyrics as simply a ploy because he is the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee is disingenuous, others including the NAACP have spoken out against these types of lyrics.

I also can not believe that Art, until a few days ago never read the full text of Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I have a dream” speech before even starting this conversation. How can anyone talk about race and not ever have read King’s landmark speech? 

As we all know by now, the MHRC has denounce Art’s method of introducing a discussion on race by printing controversial statements that included the “N” word, which has lead Mr. Gallagher to now seek out the Middletown Township Committee and Mayor Scharfenberger at tonight’s workshop meeting.

If anyone is truly upset with either, Art Gallagher, the Middletown Human Rights Commission or Middletown’s Mayor Scharfenberger, then I suggest you show up at Town Hall tonight and make your voices heard on this subject. I am sure that it will be one hell of a show and well worth the price of admission.

Tune in tomorrow for the outcome because I am sure that the spin will make everyone nauseous.

1 Comment

Filed under Art Gallaher, Martin Luther King Jr., Mayor Scharfenberger, Middletown Human Rights Commission, Middletown Township Committee, MoreMonmouthMusings, Spin