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David L. Horne, PH.D.

Stories by David L.

Practical Politics

The politics of helping somebody

During this 21st century, particularly during this Decade of the African Diaspora, and the 2015-2016

Practical Politics

The politics of concussions in football

In the new movie, “Concussion,” Will Smith gives a remarkable performance as Dr. Bennett Omalu, a brilliantly-educated (Sidney Poitier-like) forensic pathologist who reluctantly concludes that football is causing serious head trauma and disease, and he has to speak out about it in spite of gargantuan opposition and hostility.

Practical Politics

The Politics of being number one

This week, as Serena Williams begins anew her quest to win the tennis Grand Slam,

Practical Politics

The politics of ‘MisMatch Theory’

A few weeks ago, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia used the “Mismatch Theory of Affirmative Action” to question the position of the University of Texas attorney arguing for the use of race as one of several factors in admitting students to that school.

Practical Politics

The politics of Black QBs

It was interesting watching the 2015 version of the Army-Navy football game a few Saturdays ago. By game time, it had already been announced that the Heisman Trophy voting had already begun, and Navy's brilliant quarterback, Keenan Reynolds, who should have been on the ballots, would not be. Still, here was the Navy Midshipmen team, with its senior Black quarterback of four years, and Army's Black Knights, with its freshman Black quarterback, just getting started.

Practical Politics

The politics of grateful microracisms

By this second decade of the 21st century, it remains an intellectual oddity that although scholars

Practical Politics

The politics of non-inclusion

Most of us know very little about the Native American history of California or of the United States, save that several California tribes currently own gambling casinos. This column will deal with adding a bit more information to that ledger in the coming weeks.

The politics of the African Diaspora and Agenda 2063

Practical Politics

Counting Western Sahara (a.k.a the Sahrawi Arab Republic), the African Union currently has 55 member countries. The African Union has, as its primary mission, the uniting of 54 of those countries (Morocco is not yet a member of the AU) into one large entity,

Practical Politics

Commemorating the Million Man March

On Saturday, Oct. 11, a 20-year commemoration and attempted repeat of the 1995 Million Man March occurred in Washington, D.C., on the National Mall where they are building the gigantic National African American History Museum and not far from the 30-foot Martin Luther King memorial statue.

The politics of ‘getting it’

Practical Poalitics

In late September during a Sunday afternoon speech at the Edward Kennedy Institute in Boston, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) demonstrated that not all elected White lawmakers are deaf, dumb and blind to what Black folk have been trying to say to them before and especially since the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson, Mo.

The politics of copyright infringement redux

Ever wonder what ultimately happened in the “Blurred Lines” copyright infringement lawsuit after the eight-person jury unanimously voted that Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke infringed on the Gaye family’s copyright for Marvin Gaye’s 1977 hit, “Got to Give it Up?” Well, plenty.

The politics of copyright infringement redux

Practical Politics

Ever wonder what ultimately happened in the “Blurred Lines” copyright infringement lawsuit after the eight-person jury unanimously voted that Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke infringed on the Gaye family’s copyright for Marvin Gaye’s 1977 hit, “Got to Give it Up?” Well, plenty.

Practical Politics

The politics of proper focus

The Black Lives Matter Movement has most recently been in the news confronting 2016 presidential candidates about their political stances and on whether these candidates can understand what the phrase “Black Lives Matter” even means. The movement has been media-savvy so far.

The politics of Pan African education in the 21st century

Practical Politics

Colonial education in Africa was fundamentally aimed at teaching Africans that Europeans were superior in everything, and that the purpose of African life was to follow whatever Europeans said and go wherever they led. Africans were to stay divided and quarreling among themselves, and the only unity they were to achieve was in their agreement to allow Europeans to do whatever they wanted in Africa and to Africans. Colonial education was aimed at teaching Africans to stay dependent on White outsiders.

The politics of early evaluation

Practical Politics

Okay, President Barack Obama has committed himself to do an adventure episode with Bear Grylls. Hmmm. It will certainly show the strength he still has left in his presidency after the kitchen sink has been thrown at him these last seven-plus years.

Practical Politics

The politics of the Iran nuclear deal

At first glance, the Iran nuclear deal appears to be another “other people’s problem” issue that does not relate to the everyday “bread-and-butter” concerns of the nationwide Black community. It’s not about another negative police relationship in which the police-as-warriors conflicts with the police-as-guardians. It’s not even about Cuba, or immigration (which both affect the Black community) or Obamacare. No, it doesn’t at first appear to be all that important to the Black community.

The politics of the Iran nuclear deal

Practical Politics

At first glance, the Iran nuclear deal appears to be another “other people’s problem” issue that does not relate to the everyday “bread-and-butter” concerns of the nationwide Black community. It’s not about another negative police relationship in which the police-as-warriors conflicts with the police-as-guardians. It’s not even about Cuba, or immigration (which both affect the Black community) or Obamacare. No, it doesn’t at first appear to be all that important to the Black community.

The politics of President Obama in Africa

Practical Politics

Cementing his role as the African Diaspora president and hero of everywhere Africans, President Barack Obama spoke recently to a huge audience at the African Union headquarters in Addis Abba, Ethiopia. This was the headquarters featuring the great statue of Pan Africanist Kwame Nkrumah outside welcoming guests in, and the headquarters built for the African Union by the Chinese. The latter is part of the reason Mr. Obama was there.

Practical Politics

The politics of real representation

Big ups for Rep. Karen Bass! She is the ranking member of the Africa sub-committee in Congress (proper name Sub-Committee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations). As such, she is the number-one congressional advocate for increasing ‘trade, not aid’ benefits from the USA to Africa. For the past few years, she remained the primary “go-to” person for the successful renewal of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), which was signed last week by President Barack Obama for a 10-year renewal. If you have to be in a legislative fight, Rep. Bass is the one you want in your corner. She gets it done and she does not give up. She is the model of real representation in today’s U.S. Congress.

The politics of historical delusion

Practical Politics

One news source reported this week that one of its investigators interviewed one of Dylann Roof's cousins, who said that Roof had been trying to romance a young White girl recently who rejected him in favor of hooking up with a local Black youth. That, buttressed by listening over and over to loud White-power music, drove Roof to the point of his dastardly deed in Emanuel A.M.E. Church, said the cousin. That rationale may or may not have substance.

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Being a modern Black man in America

Conceptions of African American fathers

In the White House currently living and functioning brilliantly, is the most important role model of a Black husband and father, present and accountable—President Barack Obama. We can’t all be like him, but the precedent has clearly been set.

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Being a modern Black man in America

Conceptions of African American fathers

In the White House currently living and functioning brilliantly, is the most important role model of a Black husband and father, present and accountable—President Barack Obama. We can’t all be like him, but the precedent has clearly been set.

Practical Politics

The politics of helping African American young men

In February 2014, to add to the public policy executive order he’d already issued in July 2012 regarding assisting African American youth to overcome the systemic obstacles against their success in the USA, President Barack Obama issued an order to establish My Brother’s Keeper, a distinctive governmental approach toward supporting thousands, even millions of African American young men toward positive growth and success in this country.

The politics of putrid puffery

Pratical Politics

One distinctive and unfortunate part of African American culture is the too-often repeated exercise of public rants against each other. This habit is not ameliorated because it has a very long-standing tradition within the community, nor is it okay just because both famous and not-so-famous Black folk engage in it.

The politics of sudden, silent death

Clearly, being Black means having a ton of obstacles relentlessly in one’s way forward. Some such hurdles are self-imposed (e.g., too much pork-eating, too much greasy fried food, too much self-hate, too much backward thinking when thinking at all, etc.). However, most hurdles we face are social-political realities in the U.S.A. (e.g., too frequent police perception of Blacks as criminals or troublemakers, too frequent disregard for Black folk in general, an avalanche of negative social stereotypes in medicine, education, economics, etc.). Letting ourselves go to float on these daily stormy waters is a distinct recipe for death and disaster. Some kind of way, though, most of us survive.

The politics of respecting the office

Practical Politics

In the more than 2,300 days he’s been president of the United States, the sun and wind powering Barack Obama’s tall, clipper ship have more than once been interfered with, as nuts and overly partisan ideologues have disrespected the office of the president in their vain attempts at besmirching the personal integrity and reputation of the man himself.

Reparations conference report: Part Two

The Caribbean Reparations Commission (CRC) presented and read its CARICOM National Reparations 10-Point Plan (formally called the Caribbean Restorative Justice Plan) at the New York conference as a foundation document. That plan calls for:

The politics of the new reparations movement

Practical Politics

The call went out, far and wide. It was answered by delegations from more than 21 countries, according to the conference organizers. That number included Martinique, Trinidad-Tobago, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Barbados, Jamaica, Guyana, Antigua, the Virgin Islands, Canada, Sweden, France and Cuba among others.

The politics of being the change we seek

Practical Politics

No, in too many parts of the U.S. and the world, Black lives don’t matter much, yet. Clearly, they should, but bad habits most often die slowly without the pressure of penalty or substantial consequences.

The politics of leaving well enough alone

Practical Politics

In February, 2012, George Zimmerman got away with murder. That is a generalized public perception, particularly among African Americans. Trayvon Martin is dead from a bullet put into him by Zimmerman, and Zimmerman was acquitted of manslaughter in Florida court for killing Martin.

The politics of legal change

Practical Politics

Okay, two quick points here. As predicted in previous columns, the Marvin Gaye offspring, Nona, Frankie and Marvin Gaye III, won their lawsuit against Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke for copyright infringement regarding the monster hit song “Blurred Lines.” The eight-member jury voted unanimously in U.S. federal court that Williams and Thicke had too closely copied Marvin Gaye’s 1977 hit, “Got to Give it Up,” without paying the proper royalties to the copyright holders (the Gaye siblings). Whether the copying was willful, or unintended, the jury said, it was not innocent and a penalty had to be imposed. The Gaye family won $7.4 million dollars as a result of the jury’s decision. The rapper, T.I., who co-wrote a later segment of the song after the track was already laid, was not penalized by the jury.

The effects of Black History Month

Practical Politics

Carter G. Woodson was born in New Canton, Va., and raised in West Virginia, the son of former slaves. Getting education and using it to better the conditions of Black Americans was part of his cultural upbringing. Deprived of opportunities to go to public school, he educated himself until the age of 20, then attended and graduated from high school in a little less than two years. He then found a way to obtain acceptance to Berea College in Kentucky while working in a coal mine.

The politics of re-balancing the system

Practical Politics

This column covered the Marissa Alexander case previously. What’s the status and significance of it? Alexander, from Jacksonville, Fla., reported that nine days after giving birth to a daughter in 2010, her estranged husband, Rico Gray, choked her, beat her and threatened to kill her in front of his two underage sons. She retreated to the garage of the house, seeking to get out and get away, she reported, but could not exit that way for some reason. In a signed deposition, Gray agreed with this rendition of the facts to that point. Alexander then went to her car, pulled out a gun and went back into the house. When Gray approached her again, reportedly saying, “Bitch, I’ll kill you!” she shot the gun once, above his head, as a warning shot she said, hitting the wall. She did not fire again and no one was hurt.

The politics of whose historical narrative is the right one

Practical Politics

Okay, three quick points: Those who keep claiming that the November mid-terms were a rebuke of President Obama might want to re-check their data. Less than 35 percent of the exit-poll data collected on the elections—with exit-polling having been shown to be a much better indicator of voter sentiment and purpose than any pundit’s personal view—have concluded that people voted against President Obama in making their choice of congressperson. That’s only 1/3 of the vote. The other 65 percent or so said their congressional choices had more to do with the particular candidates running at that time, but had little or nothing to do with the president.

The politics of a muscular lame duck

Practical Politics

While some of us are quietly easing out of 2014, desperately hoping for a better new year, President Barack Obama has been increasingly flexing his man-in-charge muscles and roaring like a lion, rather than a lame-duck president, contrary to everything for which his critics have prayed.

Practical Politics

The politics of two trials

Within the past few months this column has focused on at least two rather interesting legal proceedings—one, an on-going trial and the second, a trial that may be. Today, we’ll revisit them both for further analysis.

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Thanks for what?

What African Americans have to be thankful for this year

Thanksgiving in the United States, for African Americans and Americans in general, has been a tradition since 1621. Essentially, it has been a territorial and state-based celebration of “good tidings” and good harvests. It did not become a national holiday until 1863, when President Abraham Lincoln declared it so for two separate occasions in August (to celebrate the Union victory at Gettysburg) and November (for the fall/winter harvests). Even then, however, succeeding presidents had to declare the holiday annually, and the fourth Thursday in November came to be accepted as the official day. President Franklin Roosevelt declared that day in 1941, and Congress, in 1944, finally passed legislation that made the official national holiday we now celebrate on the fourth Thursday in November every year.

Practical Politics

The politics of race and republican values

Along with the usual pablum trying to dissect the reasons why and who to blame for another Democratic Party ‘shellacking’ in the 2014 midterm elections—an ultimately unsatisfying bit of penis paddling, there is another story of interest underneath—the election and coming of political age of Congresswoman Mia Love, the former mayor of Sarotoga Springs, Utah. Love is African American, married to a Caucasian gentleman, the mother of three bi-racial children, and a member of the Mormon Church. She is also a dyed-in-the-wool Republican, and not a shrinking violet. She intends to be heard in Congress, but hopefully not like former congressman Allen West of Florida, nor like current congresswoman Michelle Bachman. Political dignity and circumspection would become her.

Practical Politics

The politics of diversity

Encouragements and inducements toward diversity are indeed upon us as a society. TV shows like “Modern Family,” and many more, trumpet that theme—the USA is an ethnically and otherwise diverse society.

The Politics of Ebola

Practical Politics

Lost amid the current relentless media buildup of the Ebola=Africa, Africa=Ebola mindset, are several important bits of information. The first is that the CDC and other Western health systems (e.g., Canadian Health Ministry) have been studying various strains of Ebola in Africa for more than 20 years, and the CDC even established a Viral Hemorrhagic Fever Laboratory in Uganda in 2010-2011 to act as a major research and strategy center for the disease. Russia also established its own lab and in two instances—1996, 2004—lab personnel contracted Ebola through accidental needle contamination.

Is Hip Hop a culture?

Practical Politics

My students recently had a debate over an issue that has troubled them. It is repeated below.

The politics of one step forward

Practical Politics

Like a well-appointed suitor who is totally used to controlling the relationship he established for himself, American racism knows how to give a little hope now and then to keep us hanging on. So, the Florida man who argued with Black teenagers over the loud volume of the music coming out of the youths’ van, then shot into the van numerous times, killing Jordan Davis and wounding one other passenger, just got convicted of first-degree murder. Boo Yow!! Mr. Michael Dunn is to get a mandatory 25 years to life for his murderous act.

The politics of pimping victimhood

Practical Politics

Let me wade into the gator-filled waters here. Why haven’t we heard the voice of Janay Palmer Rice through all this sound and fury over the horror of her husband hitting her? Wasn’t she the victim? Didn’t she take the blow?

Practical Politics

The politics of doing something wrong

State Senator Rod Wright is going to jail. At least, that was the sentence meted out to him by L.A. Superior Court Judge Kathleen Kennedy this week. Wright is to begin a three-month term in the county jail on Oct. 31, although he is appealing again.

Practical politics

The politics of stealing intellectual property

Within this musical and literary generation, one of the most persistent challenges is in coping with the habit of millennials to “sample” virtually everything, yet still call it their original creativity. Several much noted artists—like Diddy, Jay-Z and Pharrell Williams—owe their careers to the fine art of using earlier creative efforts of others as a base upon which to lay different lyrics and notes. An entirely new emphasis in law has grown out of monitoring and protecting prior musical compositions from plagiarism without compensation. It is connected to copyright infringement and called clearances and licensing.

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The Politics of Lessons From History

Practical Politics

In 1965-66, the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), the single most significant civil rights youth group of the 1960’s, created the first all-Black political party, the Lowndes County Freedom Party, to showcase SNCC’s belief that where Black folk were in the population majority, they should be the majority of the elected representatives. Numbers count in politics. However, according to SNCC’s calculation, organized numbers count even more.

The politics of Africa on the world stage

Practical Politics

The obvious theme of this week’s column could be and maybe should be the vicissitudes of the Michael Brown killing. But I’m not an obvious kind of writer.

The politics of judging the character of a man

Practical Politics

Daily we are assaulted in the media with opinionated judgements regarding President Barack Obama and other political leaders, ostensibly offering up evaluations of some aspect of the president’s character. Unfortunately, the vast majority of those evaluations are nothing more than vapid vituperations based on hot air and gusty emotions. Messy and relevant facts controverting these blowheart opinions are readily ignored or merely denied in passing.

The politics of media name-calling

Practical Politics

We are all aware that once the media, in one form or another, labels something or someone, and that label sticks, it’s relatively impossible to uncork that particular genie. Truth and facts have nothing to do with it.

The politics of blind-eye focus

Practical Politics

Many of us have friends or acquaintances who say and/or do things that eventually ensnare us in trouble they caused. Often our defenses against the ensuing criticisms and controversies just deepen the hole we find ourselves in, and we stand or sit stalled in place trying to figure out what the hell happened.

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