Tuesday, August 21, 2007

"What'cha Gonna Do When the Well Runs Dry?"

Let's See...
--Carolyn Goodman died this week. It went totally unnoticed on New York City television. It may have been mentioned on PBS and CABLE, I don't know, because I only watch peasant teevee (Jack LaLanne selling his juicer; David Orick selling his suction devices), the "Networks," the channels that force you to suffer tons of minutes of boring cutsey-wootsey commercials (like Jack LaLanne's infomercial (he's 91 in that commercial and it's at least 5 years old so that old son of a bitch is 96 as I type this--wonder what he's doing? Dying?)), and commercials are all lies as I teach in my classes on "Waking Up and Smelling the Roses"--you know, REAL-ALITY--sales pitches are all lies that (yes, Jack LaLanne's a liar--so's George Foreman)--exaggerations, and even truthful exaggerations are lies. But, anyway, Carolyn Goodman died; she was 92; wow, she remained a very beautiful woman over those years but a woman probably constantly irked with a pain that wants justice, a pain caused by the Yahoo factor--the ruling factor in this country--and Carolyn Goodman because of this Yahoo factor lost her very precious son, Andrew, to the cruelty of America's white cracker/redneck/KKK "majority." Her last appearance in court on behalf of her son was in the recent trial of one of the Mississippi rednecks who killed her son--and this dude and two of his moonshine-slugging-back buddies, whoopin' it up in their pick-up truck spotted Goodman, Chaney, and Schwerner, three Yankee boys the redneck good ole boys knew were down in Mississippi helping organize the blacks in order to guarantee they got to the polls and vote on order of the voting rights (100 years after they were freed from slavery by Abe "Honest in Name Only" Lincoln) they had just been given by the Civil Rights Act. "Why lookie thar, Bubba, it's them two Jew boys and that N-worder from Jew York City!" "Yew got any rope in this heah peee-cup, Homer?" "Rope, hell, hangin's too good fer them outside agitators. I got sumtin' that'll teach them thar Yankees a lessin' and that N-worder boy his proper place in our society--how 'bout I skin that sumbitch alive right in front of them Jewboys?" "Now yeer talkin' the South Shall Rise Agin', baby; let's git them N-worder lovers and that little N-wordergater bait; in fact, let's drown 'em alive down in the swamp there." "Whooooo boy! Give me a slug'athar mule, I'm gonna have me sum good ole fun tonight!"

And when they found these three young men's bodies buried in an earthen damn on a Pearl tributary, Carolyn Goodman had to go down there and identify her son. Think of what he must of looked like to his mother: the boys had been beaten so badly nearly every bone in their bodies was broken, and they had been burned, gutted, and then pitched still alive and suffering into their earthen graves like martyred saints.

Lynchin' Down in Texas Going On as Planned
Yep, folks, and most of the Yahoos, I figure, those who have no idea who Carolyn Goodman is or was, certainly figure blacks have gained equality now and dammit they should shut the F up about it and go on and get rich in the system like the Messkins and illegal Irish are. These are the same Yahoos who holler madly in favor of the death penalty. These are Yahoos who run for and get elected to political offices, like the Governor of Texas, Rick "Am I Gay or Not?" Perry--the guy who held his gubernatorial inauguration in a Right-Wing Armageddon-Mongering Christian Church in Dull-Ass (read: Dallas); a young black man's life is now in this hypocritical bird's filthy hands--this young black man's chances of not getting lynched by the State of Texas? I say nil.

I was born, raised, and educated through college in Texas and though I haven't lived in Texas in 40 years, you would think I would be ashamed of admitting I was a native Texan, but no I'm not, and I'll tell you why, politics in Texas is owned lock, stock, and barrel by the oil industry. You realize that little kids in the primary grades when I was in the Texas public school system were flooded with movies and books and comic books, all of them related to Texas history and the history of oil and its importance to Texas--and every one of these was courtesy of a Texas oil company, like Magnolia, Texaco, Conoco, Humble, Esso, Sinclair, Shell, Gulf, and Cities Service. We learned about the Spindletop oil discovery (the first oil discovered in Texas--on Spindletop Hill down in the Beaumont, Texas, area of Southeast Texas--on the Sabine River--and the air in my hometown smelled of oil and gas when the wind shifted and blew in from the north of town and the Onyx Refinery "cracking" away out there--and Onyx was a local brand but we kids knew because we'd been out to the refinery and had seen it that Humble trucks, Gulf trucks, Texaco trucks, yeah, Shell trucks filled up there, too, pulling in and out of there night and day. I had this weird algebra teacher in high school who one day broke into a tirade against General Motors, Buick in particular, and the oil industry in general--I mean his face got deathly red and he roared, "I once saw a carburator that would get 100 miles to the gallon--and the man, I knew him, sold it to Buick--and you know what Buick did?" "No, Mister Bobblehead." "Buick paid my friend one hundred thousand dollars for his invention, papers, and everything and then they took that miraculous carburator into the backshop and they smashed it to smithereens and told the inventor that as far as he was concerned he'd never heard of a carburator that would get 100 miles per gallon." Then this weird teacher suddenly went off on the oil companies and he suddenly said, "You know out there at the Onyx Refinery, you see Humble trucks out there, and you stop them and you say why is your gasoline any different than Onyx gasoline, it comes from the same source? And they answer, 'but out gasoline is called Humble, you see, so it's not really Onyx gas in there once it gets inside my truck."

Besides, too, about being a native Texan: I'm from West Texas, way out under the high sun, moving out and away from the Old South mentality that ruled East Texas and South Texas. Out in West Texas there is freedom all around you, no barriers to keep you from seeing forever back east or forever and ever out west--and the railroad split my hometown in half and those trains--I used to watch them with fun-fascination thinking "One day I'm gonna get on one of those trains and I'm gonna get the F out of this one-horse town, I guar-ron-tee"--I mean, New York City was east of my hometown--via way of Dallas--and L.A. was west of my hometown via way of the Old West. Both my families were vagabonds, my dad's family favoring California as the object of their escape; my mother's family more literary and favoring the East Coast, especially New York City--remember, I had a step-grandfather who lived his last 5 years with my family who was a native New York Citian, born and raised in Harlem, a Dutchman. That was what I loved about Texas and was proud of being a Texan, because Texas is so culturally mixed--it's dizzy with culture and most of its cultural output is genius, Texas being a source of some great original musics, the special Texas blues, the Houston r and b, the Nortena and ranchero and mariachi music of San Antonio, and Buddy Holly was just up in Lubbock, Texas, and there was a state of the art recording studio in Clovis, New Mexico, and Roy Orbison was from out in far-far-west Wink, Texas, and Willie Nelson was over in Nashville writin' all the big hillbilly hits for the biggest Nashville stars, and there was the elder Bob Wills to deal with, or even bands like Jimmy Heap and the Melody Masters, or Mance Lipscomb and Lightnin' Hopkins down in Central Texas were still alive--Texas music, and my best friend's father had a big country western hit that then crossed over and became a top ten hit and made my friend's father rich and famous (he's in the Country Western Hall of Fame) and I got to play and practice playing the piano while his son played drums out in this guy's state of the art recording studio in my hometown--you see what I'm drivin' at?--no, I'm not ashamed of being a Texan--not the kind of Texan I am--but, yes, I'm ashamed of one hell of a lot of my fellow Texans, like Governor Rick Perry--he's a cryin' shame in my book and I'll bet my eBay-bought farm (I haven't found it on the map yet) that Rick Perry will not pardon this poor dude the State of Texas wants to off come the end of August.

Remember, this guy didn't do anything but sit in a car while a friend of his was eighty feet away killing a guy. Still according to the Texas law, he's guilty--simply by his being a friend of this guy and Texas saying that this guy must have known this guy was going to murder this guy so therefore this guy's guilty of murder, too. That's how it works. Texas lawmakers believe in TOUGH LAW. The Texas Rangers were taught to shoot first and ask questions later and it's still that legendary (instinctual) law enforcement units "tough Texan" mentality that rules Texas law enforcement. They love killing in that system--and they would have loved lynching and probably a lot of them may have actually participated in lynchings--maybe even secret lynchings--lynchings of Blacks that never got out into the public--in Texas, the white polite refer to these as "necktie parties."

Carolyn Goodman's Son

In Mississippi, in the 1960s, when segregation was king, racism the status quo, and bigotry the law, it was young people who rose up and challenged the system. In racially segregated and economically depressed Neshoba County, Mississippi, it was the local black youth and northern volunteers who challenged racism and led the fight for freedom and justice. Because of the sacrifices made by many people, most of the obvious signs of racism and bigotry have been eliminated. Because of the brutal beatings suffered by demonstrators at the hands of segregationists, public facilities have been desegregated.

To achieve the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, many marched, demonstrated, and suffered brutal beatings. And some died. For three who died, Michael Schwerner, James Chaney, and Andrew Goodman, we still continue the struggle for justice.

The History

Civil rights workers Michael Schwerner, James Chaney, and Andrew Goodman disappeared at approximately 10:00 p.m., Sunday, June 21, 1964. The next day their burned-out station wagon was found in the Bogue Chitto swamp, and the bodies of the three civil rights workers were found forty-four days later, buried fifteen feet in an earthen dam. Three years after their murders, twenty-one Klansmen were arrested by the FBI, and on February 27, 1967, a federal grand jury for the Southern District of Mississippi indicted nineteen members of the White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan (White Knights) under Title 18, section 241, for conspiracy "on or about January 1, 1964, and continuing to, on or about December 4, 1964, to injure, oppress, threaten, and intimidate Michael Henry Schwerner, James Earl Chaney, and Andrew Goodman." A two-week federal trial in Meridian, Mississippi, resulted in seven guilty verdicts and sentences ranging from three to ten years.

The State of Mississippi has never filed criminal murder charges against any of the men involved in the murders. After careful review of the available evidence, including the 2,900 pages of the transcript from the 1967 federal trial, a list of exhibits found in the appendix to the decision of the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, and two signed confessions, it is evident that an organization known as the Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission was complicit in the murders of the three civil rights workers.

Read Ben's whole speech here:


And the beat of this injustice still goes on--in a state-official way in Texas with the coming lynching of this young black man.

His Name Is Kenny Foster

Kenneth Foster's time is running out.

On Tuesday, August 7, in a six-to-three decision, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals denied his final writ of habeas corpus, giving the legal green light for his execution. Foster, who is scheduled to die by lethal injection on August 30, is now at the mercy of the merciless Board of Pardons and Paroles. The odds are bad. Five out of seven board members must recommend clemency before Governor Rick Perry will consider it -- and in a state that has executed nearly 400 people in thirty years, clemency has only been granted twice. But Foster's supporters, who are spearheading a letter-writing campaign to the board and governor, are relying on one particularly salient detail to move their minds, if not their hearts: Foster didn't kill anyone.


Hey, he looks guilty to us--and so does that child; shouldn't Angelina Jolie adopt her?
OK, read Kenny's story:


Will they televise it? The Yahoos are bloodlustingly asking. Yep, sorry, Kenny, but you see justice is weird. Jesus forgives you but you see he ain't real and the Governor of Texas is real, a real piece of shit; he ain't forgiven a damn soul since he was accused of footsying around on his wife with a man--oh no! Rick is a good Christian so I'm sure he'll, under advisement from Jesus, "Fry the N word, bastard." "Governor Perry, we don't fry them anymore; we stick needles full of poison now--it's call lethal injection and it's slow, sir, so don't worry about Kenny not feeling the wrath of our almighty God, Allah, or Jehovah, or Zeus--he'll feel it alright--as our 'president' used to love watchin' 'em twist and whine for mercy before the executioner juiced 'em--that's what we say now instead of 'fry'--we say juice 'em--or 'OD his ass,' we like that one, too, though it's a little academic for the ordinary public."

Like we say, "Sorry, Kenny, but it's Amurica and your white peers have spoken--and that's like God, yeah that God you black folks seem to believe in, too, has spoken, Kenny, so, you're goose is cooked."

for The Daily Growler

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