Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Homo Escapeon's Lonely Hearts Club Band
400 years ago in 1607, John Smith of Pocahontas fame, landed in Jamestown, Virginia, where the first 20 African slaves were purchased 12 short years later, and Slavery is legalized by 1661.

200 years ago on March 25th, 1807, the abolition of the slave trade was is enacted throughout the British Empire. In the USA the importation of slaves was banned in 1808 but the end of slavery was not enacted until the ratification of the 13th Amendment on Dec 6th 1865.

50 years ago in 1957, desegregation of Little Rock Central High School is enforced by President Dwight (Ike) Eisenhower, who sends 10,000 Troops to Arkansas to allow 9 students to pass through a blockade set up by the Governor.
Ike's Administration passes the Civil Rights Acts in 1957 and 1960.

Now here we are in 2007.
I am turning 50, and I find it totally depressing that apartheid and slavery were still prevalent here in North America when I was born and has continued to this day in various forms throughtout the world.
This sad testament to the dark side of humanity is still lingering 150,00 years after we became 'human'...
can you believe that?

My favorite example of how to 'beat the system' and 'stick it to the MAN' comes courtesy of the enigmatic Actor Marlon Brando.

Brando avoided induction into the US Army by being declared 'psychoneurotic' or what was then commonly referred to as being 'crazy'.
He made them an offer that they couldn't accept!

When Marlon filled in the administrative forms:
under the question RACE
he wrote HUMAN
and under COLOUR
he wrote IT VARIES.

Brilliant..and that pretty much sums it up for me.


  1. Donn, when are you turning 50!? You need to throw a big party mon gars!

  2. Thank you Homey! Your posts are always engaging, interesting, educational and witty. You are a gentelman and a scholar and you shall be rewarded in heaven or wherever. Can I come to the big 50 party you are throwing? We have to get the party rumor started! WOOT WOOT!

  3. Happy Birthday (early?) !!

    And yes, it's frightening how far we've yet to come in the way of civil rights. We're getting better, but there are some things to really get to work on.

    What we need to STOP doing is leaving civil rights in the hands of voters. If Abe Lincoln had left it up to the voting public then we'd still have slavery. People in general SUCK and will never advance the rights of others in a mob mentality.
    That is why so many states are including discrimination in their state constitutions these days.
    Arrrrgh. Makes me snarfle.

  4. You are a very knowledgeable man H.E. and not even 50 yet.....

    Marlon Brando might look like a bit of a himbo but he sounded like he had a good sense of humour and that will get my vote every time...

    Unfortunately there is rascism and discrimination in every corner of the globe, don't think we'll ever see that change in our lifetime. Cheers H.E. for always teaching me something new.

  5. *EM*!!!!
    "kom-mohn tah-lay voo?" HE asks in his best Fannystellian Franglais.

    Ok *em* I forgot to 'highlight' all of my DaVinci Code clues...D'OH!

    50 years ago (Little Rock High)
    1957 (Civil Rights Act)
    Dec 6th (13th Amendment/1865)

    I'm almost certain that my Alien Insect Overlords will have something very special planned to celebrate my half a century!

    As you can see I am jumping the proverbial gun and should I be so lucky as to make it to the big 5-oh I will no doubt force, threaten and cajole many people to gather in my honor and overwhelm me with an ostentatious slathering of profusive accolades and lavish gift giving.

    IF I make it.

    Oh how right you are MOB mentality is totally scary...the great unwashed are not allowed to design policy for a very good reason.
    I know that I could certainly never be trusted to create a society ..could you?
    I am absolutely amazed that we even got this fluke..100%!

    angel without wings,
    Thanks for the link I couldn't find you with the last one...
    I love how you say not even 50...ARE YOU KIDDING ME?
    I never though that I would see 40!

    Now I think that 50 is nuthin' think that I am just finding my stride after half a about your basic slow learner!

    50 is the new 40 and brown is the new black.

  6. Actually Pink is the new black, so you're way behind.

    I totally forgot that your birthday is three days before mine, although decades different! (ha!!!) Ok, not decades, and you're younger than my honey, so I'll stop this faux-agist-ness. ;)

    Policy-makin IS in the hands of the unwashed masses, which was my major complaint. Every - g.d. thing goes on the ballot nowadays and people don't usually advance the human condition when we're talkin Civil Rights.
    I would be a horrible society-maker, but you could be damn sure that everyone would learn to knit before the age of five, and chocolate would be one of the food groups.

  7. shelley,
    Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.
    H. L. Mencken

    I see what you are getting at but I would argue that democracy is a complete illusion and that we really don't have any method of installing accountable common sense ideas into policy..

    we elect (does anybody really know how results are calculated or verified NO) anyway, we pick so&so because he is going to do this&this and then they just end up doing whatever they and their lobbyists want them to ..

    which usually involves starting the re-election campaign on the second day in office.

    Chocolate is my main food group.

  8. If my (older than yours!) memory is correct, it is still some way from a year since I "gave" you a wolfhound.Don;t try to grow up too soon!
    As for Brando's form-filling...I always put "human" when asked for "race." Forms today give multiple coice "ethnicity" blanks. Ooh!you can really mess with them now!
    And I know someone who answered "sex" with "once - in Scunthorpe!"

  9. dinahmow,
    Absolutely right! I wasn't trying to solicit birfday well wishes I was merely pointing out that I am the same age as the incident in Arkansas..

    which of course now doesn't seem that long ago.

    I watched Irish Wolfhound number 473 during the Westminster Show..what a magnificent creature!
    Adorable giant.

  10. Once Barack wins, this'll all just be a distant bad memory...hopefully.

  11. well well well,
    I am predicting a Guliani Obama contest..McCain will flip flop himself out of the race and Bill will get himself into trouble and Hillary will suffer the consequences...Hey you know what..I think that it's weird that I am one thousand times more interested in the US Election than I am about our own?

  12. Did Marlon Brando write Im a big fan of him from today.


  13. 50! wow... are you having a party?
    as for segregation and apartheid and the like... no comment.

  14. Once, in Scunthorpe!! I like it!!

    I went to Liberia during my student days... The taxi driver asked me where I was from.
    I said Algeria.
    Where is that?
    North Africa.
    But you're white, he choked!
    In England I am black...
    Colour: Depends where I happen to be...

  15. ...wait. US Army forms and it said "Colour?"

    Ok, how much else is bunk in this post?? :P

  16. shelley, shelley, shelley!
    Heaven forbid that I could taint the Queen's ANGLISCHE!

    I would sooner have needles poked in my eyes than begin 'ritin' inglash in that thar 'Merkin' style.
    How pedestrian.

    God Save The Queen!

  17. Hmm, I can remember seeing adults wearing "I LIKE IKE" buttons and making the mistake of asking who the heck IKE was....I'm old.

  18. keshiburra,
    In 1972 Sacheen Littlefeather accepted Brando's Best Actor Award and said," Marlon Brando very regretfully cannot accept this very generous award. And the reason for this being is the treatment of American Indians today by the film industry"

    Too close to home? I would love to hear an honest answer..obviously all of the African countries have suffered and are in various levels of chaos and dissarray from the Colonial Overlords evacuating (or being evicted) and ripping out their infrastructure and leaving nothing to work with...I just watched the Last King Of Scotland and there is a prime example..Idi Amin was a complete nutjob! Mugabe is a menacing monster..too long a list to continue...

    Nature abhors a vacuum!

    You mean to tell me that a taxi driver in LibeRIA didn't know where AlgeRIA was?
    That is an interesting's all a matter of degrees and shading to some.

    Hi Deb!
    You're not old... piffle!

    If you do remember that you should celebrate..those were the halcyon days of Americana! Leave It To Beaver..Father Knows Best...
    When hope was in the air..
    a chicken in every pot and a car in every garage...

    but for some Americans in was still 1857.

  19. I really like this post. Well done.

  20. brando lived his convictions. he was nearly run out of the industry early in his career for what was then referred to as 'dating outside his race'. the scandal broke as 'marlons tan tootsie!' in Hollywood Mirror magazine. this is what I get for collecting paper ephemera.
    on a completely different note, i need you to get in contact with me, coppens-
    we gotta have a sidebar.

  21. Isn't it a coincidence that both our posts are somewhat similar? I came here after reading your comments to my post and what do I see?

    This is another issue which pains me no end but I can't do a thing about it apart from writing. What use is our writing for these people who have been downtrodden, forgotten and ignored?

    The injustice if it all...

  22. Personally I vary between white, very white, and red .I have black friends and asian friends. Aboriginal as well. This is probably the first time I have defined them by their skin colour. And I'm pretty sure that they don't refer to me as "that white girl". It's hard to fathom that there really are people out there who think it makes a difference.That slavery existed in the first place...the thought would break your heart.

  23. ** And the reason for this being is the treatment of American Indians today by the film industry"

    WOW profound! He's got style and clarity.


  24. jammer,
    I just want to give Brando some credit for being real..he had the chutzpah to say what he mean't which was very rare in Hollywood during the 40s.

    first nations,
    He certainly had a thing for attaining exotic beauties..both the female and the island kinds. Aside from the baffling excess of Last Tango I don't think that I disliked any of his movies..he certainly had 'it'
    ..whatever 'it' is.

    The amazing disparity between what the majority of humans experience here on Earth and what the lucky sperm club, those born into a wealthy semi functioning nations, get to enjoy is beyond comprehension.

    I know that this divide will NEVER be bridged without severe, drastic changes to the way that developed countries TAKE, HORDE and WASTE.
    The only realistic solutions require too much 'sacrificing' from the NEW World and the OLD world cannot expect to live like the NEW World with the limited resources round and round we go...

    As any Greek Philosopher will testify Democracy cannot exist without some form of slavery..those of us who don't view the silent majority as slaves are only kidding themselves...we have plenty of fact we suffer from overchoice...which distracts us from tackling the very basic questions about why we are left to choose instead of deciding WHY.
    Why should we be taxed when we die?

    Naturally everybody though that it was sooo tacky to mention anything 'political' at the OSCARS!
    Now you can't stop most celebrities from illuminating us with their opinions...that didn't take long did it?


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