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Reverend Al Sharpton: The Rejected Stone

Activist reveals how he became ‘a force of consequence in America’
A Book Review

By Dwight Hobbes

Contributing Writer


One does well to take the endorsements on the dust jacket of Reverend Al Sharpton: The Rejected Stone with a grain of salt. Most glaringly, a tribute from no less suspect a source than former President George W. Bush proclaims, “Al cares just as much as I care about making sure every child learns to read, write, add and subtract.” Bush demonstrated beyond a doubt that he never wasted a moment’s thought on the wellbeing of children of color. President Barack Obama states, “Reverend Sharpton is the voice of the voiceless and a champion for the downtrodden.” Yet President Obama has proven himself deaf to the dire needs of the voiceless, if not with the fiasco of his Obamacare debacle, inarguably by his steadfast refusal to take any sort of impassioned stand on issues impacting the powerless, most conspicuously the Stand Your Ground Law, which has given gun-happy racists license to open fire on Black Americans. Lesley Stahl of 60 Minutes extols, “Sharpton is the go-to Black leader today.” Why is this White woman dictating who qualifies as the number-one guiding African American light — of either gender? It’s best to simply set those comments aside and see for yourself, deciding on your own whether the book is worthwhile reading. (Odds are you’ve already made up your mind by now as to how great an individual Sharpton is or isn’t.) The fact, of course, that it’s about one of America’s most prominent figures alone is enough to warrant a look-see if out of nothing more than curiosity. Continue Reading →

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Media quickly hypes Etta James dissing Beyoncé



It’s sad that blues immortal Etta James responded as she did to Beyoncé Knowles’ serenading President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle at the inaugural ball with Knowles’ rendition of James’ classic, “At Last.” James derided Beyoncé in a vitriolic diatribe that did not befit the dignity of James, Knowles or, for that matter, President Obama. And the media couldn’t wait to jump on it with all four feet. There is no denying that, for instance, “She had some nerve singin’ my song that I been singin’ forever,” was about the most tactful remark James made. However, there is reason to believe the icon, well known for having a fiery temperament, was not quite in full possession of her faculties when she said what she said the way she said it. You won’t find them at as many sites on the Internet as you will of Etta James picking on Beyoncé, but there are, if you look for them, references to Etta’s son Donto James acknowledging that his mother, as he told Reuters, had “been in a pretty big battle” with a debilitating disease. Continue Reading →

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